With Sarah Lawrence College Professor Yeong Ran Kim's "Queer Feminist Praxis: Digital Humanities and Community Engagement.", who came to the gallery for an Artist's Talk on Tuesday, February 20. I'll also be speaking to the LOFT LGBTQ+ Community center's Silver Connections group on Wednesday, February 28.
I am so sorry to post this. It was going to be a great talk, Fortunately, I will be speaking to Sarah Lawrence College Professor Yeong Ran Kim's "Queer Feminist Praxis: Digital Humanities and Community Engagement.", and to a group from the LOFT LGBTQ+ Community Center. But these events are for students and members only. However, I WILL be at the White Plains Library Art Gallery to speak with folks on Tuesday, February 20 from 2-4pm. Hope to see you there!
I said a few words about the project. Thank you Leslie Lehman and Patricia Miranda for pushing me to do this.
@125-150 folks, some good snacks and lots of great conversation… Thank you to everyone who came to look at the work, from Yale painting and rowing friends to students from Pelham Art Center, Ludlow Park neighbors, NYCD16-Indivisible stalwarts, friends who schlepped up from NYC on the train, my subjects, and family (including Maeve who made a surprise visit from Vieques). A special shout out to Eileen, Catalina and Maeve for making the nuts and bolts happen. Thank you to all the electeds who showed up; NYCD16 Representative Jamaal Bowman, State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, State Senator Shelley Mayer, Assemblymember MaryJane Shimsky, County Executive George Latimer, and my Yonkers City Councilmember, Corazon Pineda-Isaac.
Just a reminder that the exhibit runs til February 29, 2024. (The gallery is open during library hours, Mon - Thu: 10 am - 9 pm, Friday: 10 am - 6 pm, Saturday: 10 am - 5 pm, Sunday: 1 pm - 5 pm.) WPL is close to the WP train station and near major highways. Parking is available.
What a serendipitous event it was to have Jordan Moss enroll in my Color class at Pelham Art Center this past fall! We discovered that we have a six-degrees-of-separation relationship involving activism in the North Bronx and art in Yonkers. What I didn’t know if that he also writes this terrific Substack about local art happenings, and just gave “Out in Yonkers” a big shout out. Thank you, Jordan!
I’ll be at the gallery on Feb 6 from 12-2pm.
"Out in Yonkers" is up in White Plains! Many thanks to my intrepid installation crew, Eileen O'Connor and Catalina O'Connor for their energy, patience and design flair. I have mixed emotions; I am relieved to have finished these paintings and I am so happy that they work well together. I am a little sad to be done having that intimate painterly conversation with them, and my studio feels lonely.
Resolving the portraits over the month of December was a painting challenge. Many thanks to my sister, Mia de Bethune, for some timely advice to let the figures shine. Drapery and color became the resolution, and I have been so gratified to be that emerged in saturated colors.
Please come see the show! Our reception is January 20, 2-5pm at the Art Gallery at the White Plains Library. It is within walking distance from the white Plains Metro-North Station, close to major highways and parkways, and across the street from a White Plains City parking garage. I hope you can make it. The exhibit is up til February 29. I will also have gallery hours approximately once a week. Stay tuned for the dates and times. I will be giving an Artist's Talk to the White Plains Rotarians on February 13. The public is welcome.
The portraits are finished. I have had an interesting conversation with the paintings, about painterliness, resolution, brightness and mutedness, and drapery. Now we will see how they all look on walls that are big enough to see them together. I hope that I have done justice to my subjects and my intention to honor the rich and diverse Yonkers LGBTQ+ community.
I hope you'll join me at our reception the White Plains Library Art Gallery from 2–5pm on January 20, 2024. The library close to the White Plains Metro North train station and near major highways and parkways. there is a parking garage across the street.
All twelve portraits are well on their way. After weeks of close focusing on heads, hands, feet, eyes, noses and outfits, I need to step back and consider them as a group. As Patricia Miranda would say, “What do the paintings want?” And what are they saying to each other? How are they connected? What happens to the color and the space?
I have really enjoyed painting faces and fleshy body parts; that trope about oil paint being invented to paint flesh may well be true. I’ve been in that zone.
Stay tuned for some answers to these questions. (Hopefully… Maybe there are just more questions…)
And, in the meantime, enjoy some of these faces.
The two most recent portraits I've worked on have been couples; Christoph and Shaka and Michael and Robert. I was looking forward to painting Christoph's Marimekko patterned suit (he posed in it at my request); I have a nostalgic fondness for Marimekko from the "Danish Modern" aesthetic that was popular in some of my friends' households when I was young. I always loved those big bold splashes of color.
Michael and Robert also put a great deal of effort into their outfits, creating a wonderful puzzle for me to articulate with paint.
The challenge thus far for me in painting the couples is in find a palette and tone that embraces them both and allow the figures to sit happily in the same pictorial space.
As with all of these portraits, I am myself more and more intrigued by the space that the figures sit in. These paintings talk to each other as they emerge. I am waiting to see where this conversation goes.
Elizabeth de Bethune is a Yonkers-based artist, and member of the LGBTQ+ community. She makes portraits of her family and friends. "Out in Yonkers" is a project to document some of the Yonkers LGBTQ+ community in formal portraits that will preserve our images for posterity.