1. Philadelphia-born artist Aubrey Levinthal conveys exuberance and pleasure, depicting common and private experiences, such as taking a bath to going to therapy
2. The art world takes note of substance, quality, and steady achievement from the artist’s second solo show at the gallery
Nancy Margolis Gallery is pleased to announce Aubrey Levinthal’s second solo exhibition with the gallery. The show will be on view April 18th to June 1st, 2019.
Aubrey Levinthal lives and works in Philadelphia, the city where she was born, grew up, and received her art education. Her paintings—a mix of still life and figuration—depict the common, day-to-day experiences that together make up one’s everyday life. Her subjects range from the local neighborhood, a frequented cafe, a corner bodega, her painting studio, interiors of her home, her immediate family, and private moments in her life, such as taking a bath, eating breakfast, or going to therapy. Painted with oil on panel of varying sizes—the smallest 12” x 12”; the largest 60” x 48”—Levinthal’s compositions illustrate her unique ability to convey feelings of intimacy that resonate with the viewer. The themes in her paintings are not new to her; they are a recurring focus that continues to intrigue and pull her in due to the rich narratives they evoke. Brief moments, whether ephemeral or banal, are applauded and elevated in her work, for she understands that the commonplace has its own beauty. No matter how inconsequential they may appear, they are embraced and given significance in her paintings.
Levinthal incorporates flowers, plants, food, and eating in most of her paintings as vehicles to either advance the design and composition, or as a metaphoric expression. Exuberance and pleasure are conveyed in the copious floral bouquets in M & C (2018) and Lady at a Bodega (2018), which contrast with the single limp stem and decayed banana peel in Triangle Tavern (2018) and Snow Day (April) (2018), respectively. These latter two paintings evoke a markedly more sorrowful mood as a result of her pictorial symbolism. Levinthal embraces complexity in her interior scenes with the introduction of mirrors and reflections, challenging the viewer to unravel what is real and what is not, as seen in Natrona St. (2018) and Double Mirrors (2018). The largest paintings in the exhibit—Forty-Third St. Pho Café (2019), Tired Table (2019), and Family Vacation (2019)—center around food and eating. She artfully transforms the objects in these scenes into engaging shapes, colors and form, highlighting her proficiency at combining abstraction with representation. The technical process to make these paintings shows the artist’s ease with paint: she layers color, scrapes areas away, executes fine crisscross bush marks, and creates illusion within the overall compositions.
Substance, quality, and steady achievement reveal an artist who is rapidly maturing with each new body of work, and the art world is taking note.
Aubrey Levinthal received an MFA from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 2011. Her work has been featured in ARTnews, the NYSUN, Harper’s Magazine, the Philadelphia Inquirer and New American Paintings. She is the recipient of two Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation grants. In 2017 she was awarded a residency at Ballinglen Arts Foundation in County Mayo, Ireland in 2017. Levinthal was Nancy Margolis Gallery's featured artist during the VOLTA NY 2018 art fair.