Shoshana Dentz

Shoshana Dentz
“Fence IV #11,” 2004
Gouache on paper
8” x 10” framed, 10.75” x 12.75”
Courtesy of the artist.
Estimated value: $1750
Starting bid: $400


Shoshana Dentz was born in 1968 in New York and currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. Solo exhibitions of her paintings and works on paper include Nicole Klagsbrun and Mixed Greens (both New York) and at Angles Gallery (Los Angeles). Site-specific painting installations have been created for The Drawing Center, Triple Candie, The Rubin Museum of Art and Wesleyan University’s Center for the Arts.  Recent group exhibitions include The Weatherspoon Museum, The Rose Art Museum and Spertus Museum in Chicago. Recent awards include grants from The Pollock-Krasner Foundation (2007) and The New York Foundation for the Arts (2005).

Shoshana Dentz’s work combines formalist abstraction with a charged subject matter.  The imagery can be disconcerting, while the work is made with a tactile love for form and material.  Beauty and inspiration is found in places and images whose manmade purpose seems to be the suppression of such ideals. Dentz’s paintings since 2004 are a progression of series that pursue the content of a chain-link fence.  Recent work has focused on spiraling razor-wire and tangles of barbed wire.  The work hovers in the duality of these images – they are beautiful, visually dazzling patterns of form and space as well as unpleasant reminders of power and powerlessness.

Artist statement:

"The fences in my paintings are based on real-world fences and barbed-wire situated along the borders between Israel and Palestine. The choice of this imagery is driven by my strong attachment to my Jewish heritage, by my intense Jewish education and upbringing.  This situation, for me, is filled with enormous disappointments and even more enormous expectations - almost demands.  Given the lessons of the history and culture that I know so well, this situation embodies for me an unbearably missed opportunity for so much more.

As culturally specific as the motivations for my work have been, these are only the sparks from which the work evolves. I am fascinated by the images I choose first and foremost because of their breathtaking and complicated visual beauty, and by the way they frame and materialize light and space. This intuitive response is deepened and solidified by the questions and challenges they raise and by the emotional and political discourse they provoke."


Alwan Auction 2016

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