CONGRATULATIONS JANUARY 2021 IACA ARTIST
MINI-GRANT RECIPIENT, EMILY STRONG!
Click here to learn about grant winner, Celia Tewey.
Congratulations to Strong on a successful grant application!
The following are excerpts from her grant proposal:
I was born in Allentown, Pennsylvania in 1992 and earned my undergraduate degrees in Studio Art and Psychology from Moravian College of Bethlehem, PA in 2015. I work predominantly in oil on canvas, but I have also done wall murals as well as work in installation and sculpture. In addition to my studio practice, I have worked as a curator, a collections archivist, and as an artist's model. I currently have a studio in the previously abandoned Dery Mansion in Catasauqua, PA.
My figurative landscapes invite contemplation of physicality through meticulously painted fleshy compositions. I create raw, intimate spaces that explore the many complexities of physical relationships; with the self and with others. This series is an inclusive celebration of anatomy and form.
The compositions do not exclude rolls or folds; rather they linger on them. By celebrating the beauty of these attributes, I hope to show that these are not features to be ashamed of; rather treasured as part of being human. By not including any other objects, background, or personal/gendered identifiers, the body can be viewed exclusively within its own context.
This series has evolved to include a written companion; an interview conducted with the subjects of the paintings. These interviews give my models a voice in the process and the platform to express their own experiences with their bodies.
The grant will be used to facilitate working with an increasingly diverse pool of models to paint and interview for this series. It's very important that I be able to pay them for their time, vulnerability, and words. I consider it paramount as an artist that I not only tell the stories of a diverse spectrum of people, I must also appropriately compensate them for their contribution to the project.
Living and working in the United States, I have observed increasing divisiveness that seems to have come to a head in the last 4 years. Partly in response to that, this series evolved from being focused primarily on body-positivity and gender to being about celebration of all races, genders, ability, politics, etc. I hope to show that there is beauty in diversity and universal commonalities exist between us that can bring vital humility and unity