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Kathe Burkhart, The Liz Taylor Series: Selections from 1983-2007

Alexander Gray Associates
508 West 26th Street, 2nd floor, 212-399-2636
May 16 - June 23, 2007
Reception: Wednesday, May 16, 6 - 8 PM
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Alexander Gray Associates is pleased to present an exhibition of paintings from Kathe Burkhart’s celebrated Liz Taylor Series. Since 1983, Burkhart has appropriated images of Elizabeth Taylor, transforming a mediated icon of femininity and beauty into a force of feminist resistance and self-empowered eroticism. Kathe Burkhart is a prolific artist and writer, whose art crosses disciplines, including painting, drawing, photography, sculpture, installation, video, performance, fiction, non-fiction and poetry.

Elizabeth Taylor’s multiple personae-actress, vixen, Hollywood royalty, serial wife and divorcĂ©e, party girl, charitable humanitarian, entrepreneur, rebel, dominant woman-acts as a media-based mirror of contemporary female identity. For Burkhart, Taylor becomes a doppelganger in her paintings, in which tabloid, paparazzi shots and publicity stills from Taylor’s films are emblazoned with profanities that reclaim female sexuality and power. “I locate my position as oppositional on several levels: as a critique of representation, particularly that of women and also as a rupturing of idiomatic packaging/presentation devices,” notes the artist.

Cinematic in scale and saturated in color, Burkhart’s Liz paintings combine flat-planed Pop Art imagery with multi-media assemblage, including photographic and sculptural elements. In October 2007, Regency Art Press will publish an artist book of the complete Liz Taylor Series.

Born in Martinsburg, West Virginia, Kathe Burkhart received her BFA and MFA from CalArts. Since the late 1980s, she has had over 25 solo exhibitions internationally. Her work has been included in numerous groups exhibitions, including the influential shows TV Generations, LACE, Los Angeles,1986; From Media to Metaphor: Art About AIDS, Independent Curators International (1992); Venice Biennale Aperto (1993); Bad Girls West, UCLA Wright Art Gallery, Los Angeles (1994); Vierkant, S.M.A.K., Ghent, Belgium (1999); Open House, Brooklyn Museum of Art (2004); and Defamation of Character, PS1, Long Island City (2006). Her work is in the permanent collections of The Museum of Modern Art, New York; SMAK Museum, Ghent, Belgium; and the Flash Art Museum, Trevi, Italy. Burkhart is on faculty at New York University, and has lectured extensively throughout the U.S. and Europe. She lives and works in New York and Amsterdam.
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