Opening Reception: Thursday, October 17, 6-8 pm
DRISCOLL BABCOCK GALLERIES presents Jenny Morgan: How To Find A Ghost, Jenny Morgan’s first solo exhibition with the gallery. In this new body of work, Morgan pushes her transcendent figurative paintings to a larger scale, the pure magnitude of which amplifies the psychological intimacy of her work.
Despite the immediacy of her figures, Morgan’s deep insights into her subjects emerge slowly over time; their blurred features, sanded outlines, and unique coloration push her portraits toward a revelatory abstraction.
Morgan’s genre of realism is entirely her own. Technically intricate but experimental, ostensible yet mysterious, she obscures the physical to illuminate the spiritual. This constant search to reveal and express the spiritual is Morgan’s ongoing struggle—to express what she feels and knows, but can’t see. Morgan’s exhibition both acknowledges and offers tools for recognizing the invisible lives reflected within and around us.
Included in the exhibition is the triptych KINGS AND QUEENS, a format new to the artist. The large oil painting is composed of a self-portrait and four additional personages from Morgan’s life who recur throughout her body of work. The five figures are naked and frontal, their explicit bareness tempered with raw fragility and meditative strength. Embodying the psycho-social dichotomy that often exists in the artist’s canvases, they appear to occupy their own realm, contemplating themselves and their bodies, and seeking balance between the id and the super-ego.
In MOTHER, Morgan’s iconic dots—metaphoric windows to the soul and symbols of the protective spirit—emanate from where the baby’s fingers rest against her mother’s breast, an allegorical testimony to the undeniable link between mother and child. The mood here appears at once tender and provocative while the dramatic light and intense color scheme subtly vie with the characters to unlock the painting’s narrative. As in all of Morgan’s work, her figures seem to hover between the subconscious and the conscious, revealing something of herself while physically representing others.
Jenny Morgan has been exclusively represented by Driscoll Babcock Galleries since 2012. Morgan’s work has been exhibited nationwide and internationally in solo exhibitions at galleries in Brooklyn, NY and Denver, Colorado; and in numerous group exhibitions including the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, in Washington, D.C.; 92Y Tribeca and the Le Roy Neiman Gallery at Columbia University, both in New York, NY; and at galleries in Orlando, Florida; London, England; and Falun, Sweden. Additionally, Morgan has realized several portraiture commissions for the likes of The New York Times Magazine and New York Magazine. Her work is represented in major private collections throughout the United States.
Born in Salt Lake City, UT, Jenny Morgan currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She holds a BA from the Rocky Mountain College School of Design in Lakewood, CO and an MFA from the School of Visual Arts in New York, NY.