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Viewing Room

Renée Duval



May 7– June 18, 2022

My work has long been concerned with perceptions of the natural world. In Western culture we tend to see it as somehow outside of ourselves, and we struggle with the idea that we are intrinsically interconnected—that we are it and it is us.

In my recent work, I use digital collage to create chimerical “portraits” of human faces fused with plants and flowers.  These images are meant to feel slightly destabilizing or hallucinatory.  I also use symmetry to give the images an impression of iconography, and to evoke a sense of idealized and preternatural beauty. Working with this imagery has allowed me to explore my ideas and preoccupations with concepts of beauty, gender, nature and spirituality.

Amid the many collage images I produce, there are some that I feel compelled to develop further by transforming them into large format paintings. The shift in scale, the painting process and the language of painting itself allow me to further articulate and explore points of transition and perpetual shifts in awareness.

The faces I use in my work are those of drag performers. Already in state of metamorphosis through make-up, costume and characterization, these faces undergo additional transformations when I merge them with botanical growth. In this process, I am aiming for a kind of alchemy where the faces and plants come together and become something greater than the sum of their parts. They are neither fully human nor plant; they may be plant life mutating into human form or vice versa.

My interest lies in points of transition; the shift from one perception to another where meaning is flexible and boundless.

Flutter 64 x 68.jpg
Player 52 x 56.jpg
Renee Duval_Jumper 52 x 56.jpg
Watcher 52 x56.jpg
Tripper 52 x56.jpg

Digital Prints

Headdressat 2000px.jpg
Two of Us at 2000px.jpg
Cicada at 2000px.jpg
Mirrorball at 2000px.jpg
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