March 9 – April 3, 2020
Opening Reception: March 9th from 11:30am to 1:30pm
Sarah Sarchin’s vacuous reclining nudes, appropriations of modernist paintings: Manet’s Olympia and Picasso’s Nude Lying Down, emphasize the essential delectable ingredient, the naked female body pressed into the foreground as close to the viewer as she can get. Secondary to her figure is the decorative space of the backgrounds that exist behind her, they serve as addendums to the presentation of the body whether they be rendered in muted earth tones or vibrant swathes of bold color. And while the ambiguity of the space in which the figures exist removes reference to specific time and space (unlike the works of the modernist masters whose works are being appropriated) this very space, quasi-abstracted, directs attention to the timelessness of the nude and hints at the artist's wry humor.
The paintings are funny, they assert the primary function and importance of the model to the work (which is to say to the genre of the nude and its prominent role in the history of art), and yet they maintain a poignantly critical distance. The artist challenges us to take note of how women have been used in this genre and offers back to us a vacuous, far from seductive form, that is anything but desirous. This is not the shock of the naked prostitute that shook the viewing public relegating Olympia to the 1863 Salon Des Refuses, rather this is a re-feminist version of male modernist paintings, a subtle prick into the fabric of western painting traditions from one of its own.
Sarah Sarchin received her MFA in Painting from UCLA. Recent solo exhibitions include "Smoking Visage" at Grice Bench, and "Sarah Sarchin" at Sean's Room, both in Los Angeles. Sarchin has also exhibited work with Bass and Reiner, San Francisco; Index, Los Angeles; Dread Lounge, Los Angeles; The New Wight Gallery, Los Angeles; The Pit, Los Angeles; and the A.I.R. Gallery, Brooklyn. Sarchin was the 2014 recipient of the Kay Nielsen Memorial Award from the Grunwald Center for the Graphic Arts at the Hammer Museum. In 2015 She was invited by the Royal Drawing School to attend the Dumfries House Artist Residency in Ayrshire, Scotland. Her work has been featured in the Los Angeles Review of Books. Sarchin lives and works in Los Angeles.