Exhibit, gallery talk showcases female artists’ perspectives



“Pasithea, Goddess of Rest and Sleep” by Gloria Nixon- Crouch is one of the many pieces on display at the “SHE Voices” exhibit.

Stacey Franciamore, Assistant News Editor

The Iona College Council on the Arts hosted the gallery talk for the exhibit “SHE Voices: Expressions of Femininity” in the Brother Kenneth Chapman Gallery on March 11 in celebration of Women’s History Month.


The exhibition, which has been on display since March 6, includes the work of artists Esther Kong Lo, Gloria Nixon-Crouch and Judith Weber.


Curated by Lo, the exhibition reflects diverse interpretations of femininity. Each artist used their skill and creativity to construct delicate yet powerful pieces that explore various female themes.


“The whole idea of “SHE Voices” is to celebrate femininity and how each of us express femininity,” Lo said.


Lo presented and discussed her work first during the artist talk. She explained that her pieces are inspired by real people.


“When I work on a piece, I always have something in mind,” Lo said. “I mostly work from life.”


Lo shared that her sculpture “Lady in a Cape“ was inspired by her neighbor’s daughter.


“One day she was wearing a sweatshirt,” Lo said. “I asked her to put her cape on and she transformed.”


Lo said that the sculpture represents how women experience a variety of emotions and sometimes try to protect their vulnerability.


“If you look at her from this angle, she’s quite feminine and very soft,” Lo said, “but once you look at her from another angle she has more of a tough, militant look.”


Another one of Lo’s pieces, “Eternal Flames,” was also influenced by a real-life woman.


“She had an afro, but I saw her with a head of fire,” Lo said. “I wanted her to feel inspired and so I gave her a head of flames.”


Nixon-Crouch was the next artist to present her artwork. Unlike Lo, Nixon-Crouch explained that her work is spontaneous and unplanned.


“I give no thought to anything that I do,” Nixon-Crouch said. “For me, the older I get the more I want to be spontaneous. I just want to do what I want when I want to do it, put it all together and make it really nice.”


Nixon-Crouch explained the process of creating her pieces while highlighting that it is up to the viewer to decide what they symbolize.


“All of these feel feminine,” Nixon-Crouch said, “but you really have to decide what it is for yourself.”


While discussing her piece “The Bow,” Nixon-Crouch explained how she views its intricate folds.


“To me, all of these folds have to do with the secrets a woman’s body holds,” Nixon-Crouch said.


Weber was the final artist to share about her work. She explained that she finds inspiration for her art in her sleep.


“My art is very intuitive,” Weber said. “I don’t think about them before I do them. I do think about them in the back of my mind when I’m sleeping.”


According to Weber, she has difficulty explaining her work because it’s influenced by feelings and emotions rather than ideas.


She also said that her goal is to get other people to look at her art and come up with their own unique interpretations.


“I want my pieces to reach out to you,” Weber said. “I want you to feel something. Whatever it is that’s going on in your head when you look at it, I want you to interpret that.”


The artists concluded the gallery talk by answering the audience’s questions, which ranged from how the artists go about their work to how long it takes them to complete a piece.


“It depends how much I sleep,” Weber said. “Sometimes, after I’ve slept for a couple of days, I can go back into the studio and make a piece in a few hours.”


For those interested in viewing the pieces featured in “SHE Voices: Expressions of Femininity,” the exhibit will be on display until April 4. The gallery is open 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Wednesdays, 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursdays and 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays.