The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum

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Important Update

January 30, 2011 to June 5, 2011 |

Hope Gangloff: Love Letters

Hope Gangloff was born in Amityville, New York, in 1974. She studied fine art at Cooper Union in New York and for many years made her living by doing illustrations for publications such as The New York Times and The New Yorker and working in a foundry. Since her first solo exhibition at Susan Inglett Gallery in 2006, she has been primarily busy with her art.

The title Love Letters was suggested by Hope. This is not a surprise, since she constantly states that she loves her friends, her husband, her dog, and nature. I will venture to say that she loves painting just as much and that her canvases bring all those irrepressible love affairs together. In this exhibition dedicated to portraiture, Hope’s work presents her closest friends from life and from intimate photographs taken while on vacation, at dinner, or hanging out at their houses or studios. Some elements of her compositions come from those photographs, but mostly she just gets a feeling from them, because being visually accurate or realistic is not her interest. “It has to look right, but it doesn’t have to be right; it has to feel good,” she explains. With her, it’s all about feeling.

Lounging, relaxed—or even passed out—the artist paints and draws her peers mainly in self-engrossed, inward or aloof demeanors, and in unassuming everyday scenes. Hope’s work is not only forgiving—as is true love—it is close and personal, and exudes an air of existentialism. These highly nuanced and passionate portraits ultimately convey the feeling of a whole generation of young adults trying to cope with our current “Great Recession.” Hope’s work is the expressive register of our era; in the midst of the harsh struggles of our current everyday lives, she chooses to depict both beauty and passion.

Mónica Ramírez-Montagut, Curator.