Artistic careers often hinge on visibility, which is what makes the upcoming group show, “This Too Shall Pass,” at the prestigious Venus Over Manhattan Gallery such a pivotal moment, particularly for artists with roots in the DMV area. The exhibit, which opened on July 11 will present a captivating exploration of the significance of florals in contemporary art, curated by Racquel Chevremont.
The impressive roster features a mix of emerging and established artists, each utilizing florals in a unique exploration of themes such as impermanence, transience, personal memory, and ongoing change. Among the lineup are Maryland natives Coady Brown, Shinique Smith, and Charles Mason III; presented alongside former D.C. resident Melissa Joseph.
Mason is known for his gestural flowers on paper, while Joseph’s new felted work explores her own unique narrative in relation to flowers. Brown’s works bridge the balance of personal freedom with the complexities of vulnerability in public and private life. Smith is renowned for her sculptural practice, with multiple solo museum presentations under her belt.
“Whenever I see people carrying flowers around the city, it makes me happy. I don’t know who, but somebody’s going to get flowers,” Joseph shared.
Despite the ephemeral nature of flowers, the artists have captured their profound expressions of human emotions in a manner that resonates even after their physical forms fade away. Each work conveys a unique essence, embodying the individuality that lies within each artist.
Additionally, the exhibition will feature Alex Anderson’s acclaimed ceramic wall works, Smith’s calligraphic abstractions, Brown’s striking depictions of flower arrangements, Marc Dennis’ hyper-realistic renderings, Natia Lemay’s all-black paintings with heavy impasto reflecting personal experiences, Maia Cruz Palileo’s works in flash, Leilah Babirye’s wood and ceramic works, and Diana Sofia Lozano’s mirrored panel incorporating organic forms.
Located at 55 Great Jones Street, the Venus Over Manhattan Gallery is known for providing a prominent platform for artists. The founder, Adam Lindemann, a seasoned art collector and writer, has been instrumental in realizing this exhibition, providing an ideal collaboration for the diverse and multifaceted collection of works.
“This Too Shall Pass” offers an immersive perspective on the transient yet enduring beauty of florals in art.