Reisha Perlmutter is pleased to present an exhibition of new oil paintings featuring international champion free diver and muse Ashleigh Baird in the brilliant waters off of the Lucayan Archipelago in the northern West Indies.
“I was inspired to create a series about the connection to the natural world and the universal joy and sense of communion it gives us. The visual language of painting is an incredible mechanism of communication which transcends the barriers of psychological and physical isolation felt by so many,” said Perlmutter.
In this exhibition, the artist and the viewer alike must breathe deeply as free diver model Baird escapes into a world beneath the surface, revealing an aquatic landscape of light and reflections. Through her mastery of breath and awareness of body, she has adapted to the ocean as home. Perlmutter describes this series of works as “inspired by the philosophy of Emerson’s Self Reliance and the pursuit to know oneself,” a collision of the force of the sea and a woman’s strength in her command of the physical boundaries of her body.
This series explores the union of body and ocean as one visually through the value of figure and environment holding equal weight and realization in the works. A departure from the classic posturing of female models by male artists to objectify them, these paintings embrace the fluidity and spirit of the female body as it moves through the ocean. Perlmutter’s ongoing feminist exploration of the body has created space for women to explore what it means to connect with and love the body they live within and celebrate the individuality of that expression.
Perlmutter for the first time has also produced and directed a series of short films to accompany the Paradise exhibition, allowing the audience to be transported to the crystalline waters and simultaneously to the saturated colors and creative nest of her studio.