Like the Spice is pleased to present Civil Union, featuring individual and collaborative works by Jenny Morgan and David Mramor. Morgan, a painter of meticulously psychological portraits, and Mramor, who makes photo/paintings driven by intuition, would not appear to someone encountering their works as individuals to be the perfect match that they are.
Morgan’s portraits are tightly controlled photorealistic renderings of people known very well by the artist. She often scrapes away areas of the figures, revealing both the layers of her technique and the metaphorical flesh of her subjects. Morgan’s works are at the very pinnacle of planning, discipline, and control in the service of emotional clarity, tied quite specifically to the individuals she depicts.
Mramor’s hybrid paintings are alchemical combinations of photography and painting. Reacting to digitally manipulated imagery printed onto canvas, Mramor “corrects” the images by adding layers of intuitive marks in many media, recently even including collage. The marks have a wild quality, seeming almost random at first encounter, but there is a deep formal intelligence and perverse beauty to Mramor’s works; they are absolutely fearless.
Worked by each artist in several turns, the collaborative works are built in layers of intervention and invention. The Apollonian Morgan and Dionysian Mramor inform each other’s input while respectfully resisting each other’s positions. The artists talk of these collaborations as an exercise in trust, giving up personal ego and control, as well as a way to use each other as a tool, performing a partially-outsourced creative act.
Jenny and David met in graduate school at the School of Visual Arts in New York during the fall of 2006. Having studios next to each other, they found comfort in each other’s artistic process, Morgan in the looseness of Mramors innate strokes and line, and David in Jenny’s flat symbolic masterful portraits. After grad school they merged studios and while both working on their own paintings sporadically produced multiple collaborative works. “Both of our work has totally transformed as a result of that first collaborative piece we did, and continue to change with each piece we make together”.
Jenny Morgan was born in Salt Lake City, Utah in 1982. She had her first solo show in New York at Like the Spice Gallery in January of 2009, and has exhibited nationwide in solo shows at the Plus Gallery and the Pirate Gallery in Denver, Colorado. Ms. Morgan has participated in group shows at Columbia University, The LeRoy Neiman Gallery, Smithsonian Institute’s National Portrait Gallery, and multiple galleries in Colorado, Florida and New York City.
David Mramor was born and raised in Cleveland Ohio in 1984. Mramor has exhibited nation wide in group and solo exhibitions in such galleries as Massimo Audiello in New York City, Plus Gallery in Colorodo, and Texas Fire House in Queens NY. Both Jenny Morgan and David Mramor work at the Marilyn Minter Studio and currently live and work in Brooklyn, NY.