First Street Gallery
First Street Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of large scale portrait drawings by Sallie Benton. This is the artist's first exhibition since receiving an MFA from Yale University in 1994. Benton is known for her figure painting as well as her forays into sculptural variations on the Gothic arch (reviewed by John Russell, The NY Times, and Amy Fine Collins, Art in America).
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The fourteen, 58" x 38" drawings contain beautiful subtleties of observation. It is through the simplicity, elegance of line and sensibility of the hand that the essential character of the person is captured. These drawings, in graphite, pastel and charcoal form an imposing physical presence and explore the relations between portrait, subject, spectator, and artist. Particular attention is paid to portraiture as psychological biography. Benton believes there are at least four subjects within a portrait: the physical person, the interior personality of both the artist and sitter, and finally, the presence that emerges on the page.
Sallie Benton has been in numerous exhibitions since she began showing in 1975, including The Brooklyn Museum, The Parrish Art Museum, The National Academy of Design and The Newport Harbor Museum.