Thierry Goldberg is pleased to present Who’s a Good Girl?, an online exhibition of works by Hanna Brody. The exhibition runs from August 5 - September 3, 2022.
Deliberately disregarding the momentous in favor of the small and ordinary, the works in Who’s a Good Girl? examine the trivial repetitive moments that overtime form and define a relationship. Brody utilizes the act of portraiture as a means of reflection, often contemplating her own role in relativity to her formed connections. Vulnerability and sentimentality permeate the works, each intimate portrait exposing Brody’s innate interpretation of acceptance, nurturing, and belonging.
Pushing the bounds of a single instance, Brody’s subjects move through her composition as compilations of themselves. Similar to David Hockney's photo collages, Brody draws inspiration for her work from a series of photos that she has taken over a limited period of time. In Are you dissociating? (2022), a couple sits upon a sprawling blanket in a park. Their body positioning, clothing folds, facial expressions and hand gestures are not the result of a static image but rather of one that has been developed through the cropping and collaging of ever so slightly varying instances. In generating her subjects Brody draws on these slightly different perspectives infusing a sense of fluidity into her work.
There is a calmness that Brody’s subjects exude, a certain openness exposed in their display of haphazard disarmament. If you’re not in three programs you’re in denial (2022), exhibits a woman lying on a floor, comfortably propped on pillows and blankets. She lackadaisically looks off into the distance, her body language both tranquil and relaxed as a dog wriggles between her arms. The receptiveness that Brody’s subjects express is not limited to their obliviousness. In Baby blue (2022), both the figure and the dog stare directly out into the plane of the viewer fully aware of their presentation. Brody’s relationships with her subjects pervade her work; her figures acquiesce to their observance with an ease that condones familiarity.
Brody sets the tone for each painting by working in broad washes of a singular hue. In a process that is akin to monoprinting, she develops each composition through an interplay between directly painting and printing an inverse reproduction onto the canvas. Teetering between these aspects of painting and printmaking, she builds up the surface of her work through the addition and subtraction of layers of paint. In It began slowly (2022), a man gazes softly toward the viewer as he pets a small dog. Certain areas of the painting resonate as crisp and clear while others seem to dissolve into the background. These serendipitous occurrences of transparency add a feeling of nostalgia to the work, as if you are lost in recollection oscillating between clarity and obscurity.
Untethered by reality or significance, Brody's figures express a fleeting but sentimental sense of time. Her palette of deep blues, acrid yellows, bright oranges, and dusty pinks induce the mood of each work dictating the disposition of her subject. There is a subtle but conscious abandonment of preciousness in her work, an allowance for joy to be derived from moments that brim with banality. Venerating the present through remembrance, Brody’s portraits act as memory. Certain elements appear in steady focus while others seemingly dissipate before one's grasp.
Hanna Brody (b. 1994 New York, NY) lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She received a BA from Lewis and Clark College in Portland, OR. She has participated in group exhibitions with Studio 9D, New York, NY; Form & Concept, Santa Fe, NM; and The Factory, Long Island, NY among others. This is Brody’s first show with Thierry Goldberg Gallery.