“Chromatic,” featuring work by Linda Behar, at 3S Artspace in Portsmouth
Artist Opening Reception: Friday, March 1. 5-8pm.
Free and open to the public.
Reception coincides with Art ‘Round Town monthly art walk in Portsmouth.
I’m an artist whose interest in shapes manifests itself through a variety of media. I seek to bring forward the contradictions between the expectations of society and an individual’s sense of self. My focus is on women and the stark standards that have been established for a woman’s appearance. After finding a study made by the U.S. government in 1940 to standardize the woman body, I created a geometrical shape using the measurements generated by the study and presented it in drawings and three-dimensional figures.
The exploration of shape goes deeper through my work with the study of body language. The pose is shapes, and shape is both a noun and a verb– to understand the human behavior is imperative to see it as a whole. Body language gives a visual form to identity and enhances the visual aesthetics of communication. You are what you create, as much as you are what you perform. My goal is to create images that echo the past, confront the present, and embrace the future.
Chromatic is a collaborative project and part of an ongoing investigation into the representation of women’s bodies and gender identity. This collaborative art project was inspired by the widespread success of coloring books. Coloring books often feature complex floral or geometric designs; my images take a stand against the expectations of femininity. The background consists of traditional Art Nouveau iconography, which juxtaposes a confident nude woman siting in a thought-provoking pose.
After creating a black and white print, I asked women from different backgrounds, cultures, education levels, and nationalities to complete the prints as they saw fit. I sent prints to women across the U.S. and around the world. I have received more than 300 images colored from family, friends, and many people I have never met who were excited to be a part of this collaboration. Chromatic represents the variety on personalities and worlds in which each of us are living.
Born in Venezuela and established in the United States since 2000, Linda Behar is an artist originally trained as a civil engineer. Always interested in the arts, she attended the Academia Taller Arte y Fuego in Caracas between 1994 and 1998. She became a specialist in glass casting and pate de verre through studies and workshops in Italy and the U.S..
Interested in learning new materials and methods for her work, Behar received a Master of Fine Arts degree with an emphasis in printmaking at Florida Atlantic University, from which she graduated in 2014.
Behar has actively participated in biennales in Venezuela and the United States with numerous awards and honorable mentions. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally in galleries and art centers. A dedicated teacher, Behar taught in Venezuela as well as at the University of Miami and Florida Atlantic University.
Behar uses a wide variety of techniques and medias. She is currently working on combining laser cutting with traditional printmaking techniques, specifically woodblock printing. Her research has centered around the representation of women’s bodies and gender identities throughout history, more specifically focused on body language as it relates to gender norms.
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