Jim Kempner Fine Art opens exhibition with works by contemporary figurative painter Carole Freeman
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Jim Kempner Fine Art opens exhibition with works by contemporary figurative painter Carole Freeman
Carole Freeman Unsung Installation view.

NEW YORK, NY.- Jim Kempner Fine Art is presenting Unsung, its first exhibition with the contemporary figurative painter Carole Freeman. The exhibition features twenty-four 12 x 9” portraits of little known or not-known-enough American heroes who represent a range of social and political issues including sexual harassment, fake news and the “post-truth” moment, racism, the environment, terrorism, Islamophobia, and civil, LGBTQ and women’s rights. Unsung runs from March 17th- April 22nd, 2018.

Carole Freeman subversively takes on topical issues through her depictions of controversial and courageous figures. Consideration of historical and present day events and statistical details led to a roster of subjects who reflect the diversity of the US population. Subjects are as varied as a physician, intellectuals, a mother, pilots, a miner, a sex educator, and politicians. Freeman’s portraits, realized from sourced images, are imbued with a compelling and vivid immediacy. Modest in size yet powerful in concept and execution, these luminous paintings affirm the quiet potency of the portrait genre. UNSUNG, an implied yet meaningful meditation on the present US political climate, offers an aesthetic and provocative chant for the possibilities of beauty and good in chaos.

Examples from the exhibition include: William Moore McCulloch, who worked tirelessly for equal rights at the risk of political suicide and was recognized by President Kennedy for his important influence in passing the Civil Rights Act; Edward Brooke, one of the first Republicans to call on President Nixon to resign in light of the Watergate scandal; Mose Wright, who in 1955 testified at the trial of the men who brutally abducted, tortured, and murdered his great nephew, Emmett Till, for allegedly whistling at a white woman; and Lois Jenson, a Minnesota miner who, in 1988, filed Lois E. Jenson v. Eveleth Taconite Co. and won the first class-action sexual harassment lawsuit in the United States.

Also represented are four New Yorkers: Jane Jacobs, a journalist, author, and activist who fought and stopped the Robert Moses Lower Manhattan Expressway; Amy Goodman who is an investigative journalist considered a “guardian of truth” by Rolling Stone magazine, and the host and producer of the news program Democracy Now!; Muhammed Salman Hamdani, a Muslim NYC Police Department cadet killed while helping others during the aftermath of 9/11 yet falsely investigated for possible involvement; and Sylvia Rae Rivera, a transgender activist and self-proclaimed drag queen who was a founding member of the Gay Liberation Front, Gay Activists Alliance, and the Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR) organization.

Carole Freeman (American/ Canadian, b. 1954) grew up in Winnipeg, Canada and attended the Royal College of Art in London, UK (M.A., Painting). Recent solo exhibitions include Portraits of Facebook at Edward Day Gallery, which opened with special guest Jordan Banks, Managing Director of Facebook Canada; Something About Winnipeg at Gurevich Fine Art, and three exhibitions of celebrity portraits featured during the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). Freeman has received international recognition through Los Angeles group exhibitions with David Hockney, Elizabeth Peyton, Frank Auerbach, Picasso, Matisse, Lautrec, and Klimt, and the shortlist exhibitions for Young Masters Art Prize 2017 in London, UK. Commissions include those by New York art critics Jerry Saltz and Roberta Smith, filmmaker Morgan Spurlock, Los Angeles art dealer Leslie Sacks, and Lord and Lady Glentoran of Dublin, Ireland. Print media features have been published in The Globe and Mail, The National Post, Winnipeg Free Press, and Studio Visit, and online in ArtDaily Newsletter, ArtSlant, Berkshire News, Los Angeles Magazine, and Visual Art Source. Grants and awards have been received from the Canada Council, University of Toronto, and Royal College of Art. Freeman is represented in galleries in Canada, the US, and the UK where her work can be found in private, corporate, and public collections as well as in Italy and Australia. Carole Freeman currently works and lives in Toronto, Canada.

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