Tabitha Vevers: Lover's Eyes - Selfies

Gallery II

September 10 – October 17, 2015

Press Release

Lori Bookstein Fine Art is pleased to announce an exhibition of recent paintings by Tabitha Vevers. This is the artist's second solo-show with the gallery.

For this exhibition the gallery will present a selection from the artist’s latest series of “Lover’s Eyes” that deal with the theme of self-portraiture. The artist explains of this work:

In the midst of a world drowning in selfies, I began thinking about the history of self-portraiture and the many ways artists have portrayed themselves from the Renaissance to contemporary art. I knew that the introspective depth and integrity of artists’ self-portraits would stand in sharp contrast to the cell phone selfies we see today. But I was equally delighted to discover the playfulness and even performative aspect of these early selfies long before the Film Stills of Cindy Sherman or the stand-ins of Jack Pierson. I was struck by the varied costumes and feigned look of surprise in some of Rembrandt's paintings, or Gustave Courbet's Desperate Man in which he portrays himself pulling his hair out, the whites of his eyes bared.

This group of Selfies is the fifth series of appropriated eye paintings I’ve done, playing once again on the 18th century tradition of eye portraiture, often referred to as Lover's Eyes. Though the intent of my earlier eye paintings was to reverse the gaze from that of the original artist to the gaze of the model, I have never felt so closely observed in my studio as I have with this wall of artist's eyes staring back at me. I can't help but imagine that the gazes I’ve resurrected are somewhat mystified to see me, rather than their own reflections looking back at them. And yet it is the very way these eyes hover between a communion with the self and with an imagined viewer (and indeed posterity) that gives them their haunting power.

Tabitha Vevers received a BA in art and art history from Yale University and studied at Skowhegan School of Painting + Sculpture. She is the recipient of many awards including the Pollock-Krasner Grant, a George + Helen Segal Foundation Grant, an International Association of Art Critics Prize, and fellowships from The MacDowell Colony, Fine Arts Work Center, The Ballinglen Arts Foundation (Ireland), and Oberpfälzer Künstlerhaus (Germany). She has work in a number of public collections, including Yale University Art Gallery, New Britain Museum of American Art, and the deCordova Sculpture Park + Museum where she was recently honored with a mid-career retrospective entitled NARRATIVE BODIES. Her work has been featured in many museum exhibitions, including GOLD at the Belvedere Museum (Vienna) in 2012. Born in New York, she currently lives and works in Cambridge and Wellfleet, MA.

Tabitha Vevers Lover’s Eyes: Selfies will be on view from September 10 – October 17, 2015. An opening reception will be held on Thursday, September 10th from 6-8 pm. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10:30 am to 6:00 pm. For additional information and/or visual materials, please contact Joseph Bunge at (212) 750-0949 or by email at