Her Work: Lauren Gidwitz
Learn more about a Collective 131 featured artist, Lauren Gidwitz
Lauren Gidwitz [American, b. 1983 Chicago, IL] is an artist working in oil painting, ink drawing, and mixed-media two-dimensional, and three-dimensional works. Gidwitz's work has been exhibited and collected throughout the U.S. and Europe. She was a resident of BigCI in the Wollemi National Park, Australia, the Alfred and Trafford Klots Program in Lehon, France, the Arctic Circle Expedition in Svalbard, Norway, and the Vermont Studio Center. Gidwitz has been a visiting critic at Maryland Institute College of Art and Brown University. She received her MFA in Painting and Drawing, from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Gidwitz lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.
Artist Q & A:
Where do you live/work?
live and work in Brooklyn, NY.
What themes do you explore in your art?
All of the content in my work leads back to an overarching theme of power dynamics and struggles; particularly ones that at their core are contradictory to what they appear to be on the surface. Subthemes within the pieces deal with notions of safety, home, family, consumption, fetish, and taboo. All of the work stems from my own life, but materializes in a way that I hope provides room for the viewer to have their own interpretation and experience.
What is your experience being a woman in this industry?
There are challenges, as with any field. Professional relationships in creative industries are more intimate and personal because of the passion it requires for all players involved (artists, curators, advisors, dealers, etc.). There tends to be more inclusion and clout automatically granted to men in the art world, but more specifically white cisgendered straight men. Women are not the only ones who find the waters difficult to navigate. It is much more complex.
There seems to be a turning of the tides, but it is slow and at this point I think many are skeptical that the changes we are seeing are more than superficial.
That being said, I see immense ferocity, passion, and dedication in my peers and many people I admire in the art world. There is a huge push to create a new standard where we are seeing more exhibitions that reflect the complexity of our society based on the strength of the artistic prowess, and not relying on old norms.
Who are some artists/art professionals that you admire?
Eva Hesse, Louise Nevelson, Wangechi Mutu, Lisa Yuskavage, Mamma Andersson, Pipilotti Rist, Saya Woolfalk, Chantal Akerman
What does a typical day look like for you?
I wake up with the sun. If I don’t have a freelance gig, I head to the studio after a coffee and a long walk or a swim, to clear my head. I spend as much time in the studio as possible, and have to schedule other activities in to maintain balance. I find it very important to be around the work in progress, even if I am not making in that particular moment. “Working” is as much about looking and thinking as it is making a mark.
Where do you find inspiration?
The vividness of colors on a wet cloudy day
Going to the cinema
Brightly colored shoes
Science & Mathematics
I’m heading to a residency in Indonesia in a couple of weeks. Going to spend my time making a lot of work, attempting to learn how to surf, and figuring out how to finagle a space in New York City with multiple rooms to make a full-scale immersive installation.