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Harper’s Books In East Hampton Presenting Works By Irish Painter Genieve Figgis

Ali Friedlander

"Venus at Her Mirror After Velázquez" by Genieve Figgis, Acrylic on Wood, 2016.

On Saturday, July 2nd, Harper's Books in East Hampton will welcome back artist Genieve Figgis as she debuts her second exhibition, Heavy Metal Picnic, at the East Hampton-based book store and gallery. Harper's Book is the very same place Figgis launched her United States debut in 2014 with Yes Captain.

This exhibition will feature a selection of 16 original acrylic works by Figgis, "in which her delirious depictions of eighteenth-century debauchery and dreamlike scenery are transposed from more intimate, modest proportions to a far vaster and immersive scale".

Figgis' works have been described as "nastily entertaining pieces of work" by Rebecca Smith of The New York Time, regarding the way the artist combines "a scathing sense of humor with a penchant for the absurd" in her depictions of eighteenth century figures, some of her favorite subjects, in various compromising positions. Her use of acrylics creates a feeling of vagueness in the features of her subjects, yet allows her paintings to take on a wispy and marble-like aesthetic from the use of the paint. Her elaborate and textural paintings, with minimal lack of naturalistic details and profound colors, give her work the feeling of being both "highly controlled and entirely accidental".

In her newest exhibition, Heavy Metal Picnic, Figgis pays homage to many art historical legacies, revealing her acute sensitivity to form and composure, as well as her skilled use of her medium through the use of larger prints.

Figgis is a graduate of the Gorey School of Art, located in Wexford, Ireland, and graduated with a Bachelor's degree of Fine Art in 2006. Following this, she continued her studies, earning a Master's Degree in Fine Art from the National College of Art and Design in Dublin in 2012. After receiving her degrees, she went on to have multiple solo exhibitions, and gained attention through her various social media platforms. Through her social media presence, she caught the eye of Richard Prince, who applauded her unique aesthetic through sharing her work on his own social media platforms, and eventually leading to her exhibition at Harper's Books. In addition to many exhibitions following her highly celebrated debut at Harper's Books, Figgis also published her own book, Making Love with the Devil, in 2014.

Figgis' second exhibition at Harper's Books will open on Saturday, July 2nd with a reception that the artist will be attending, and run through Wednesday, August 10th.

Harper's Books is located at 87 Newton Lane in East Hampton. For more information, visit www.harpersbooks.com.

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