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Local Artist Bonnie Lucas’ Show, “Young Lady,” Garners Rave Reviews

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Bonnie Lucas’s “Smiling Girl,” from 1983, at JTT.

The gallery JTT (191 Chrystie St.), is currently presenting “Young Lady,” a solo exhibition of work made by local artist Bonnie Lucas over the last 40 years.  It opened in late January to warm reviews, striking a newly relevant tone when it comes to feminist themes and the messages of objectification the mass media still sends us when it comes to women and sexuality.

Lucas creates pink and pastel colored “assemblages,” or collages, made of found objects, deconstructed and full of warped symbols that have been sold to women and young girls throughout the ages.

The Lo-Down profiled Lucas in 2011, when she was featured in a solo show at Esopus Space.  You can read our story here.

About Lucas’ lifelong endeavor, Olivia Murphy writes in ArtSlant, “Lucas is participating in the materialist culture that women are so often held to (there are so many things women must to buy to stay “women”), but she does so in all the wrong ways. She’s not buying these beautiful little dresses, or toys, or hair clips, for their intended purpose of being used by a little girl. Rather she’s collecting them just to break them apart and rearrange them, and she’s doing it with both love and hate: the attraction and repulsion to “pink.” As she says: “I love the pink doll, but I love even more ripping her head off.” ”

Last week, critic Will Heinrich recommended the exhibit in the New York Times, noting, “Bonnie Lucas made the memorably unsettling gouaches and assemblages in her JTT show “Young Lady,” curated by Marie Catalano, in the 1980s, but they’re all too timely now. The rosy color that dominates here is just a bit more frankly sexual and charged with menace than Barbie-doll pink.”

Young Lady, at JTT, is showing through February 26, 2017.

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