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Melora Griffis, “bruised kite hope flares,” acrylic, gouache, and pastel on paper, 2010 (courtesy of the artist and 571 Projects)

571 Projects
551 West 21st St. #204A between Tenth & Eleventh Aves.
Thursday, December 8, free, 7:30
Exhibition on view Tuesday - Saturday through December 16, free, 12 noon - 6:00 pm

In “wings and murmurs,” Melora Griffis’s intimate new solo exhibition at 571 Projects in Chelsea, many of the works feature variations on women’s faces, from the self-portrait “against the wall,” in which the painter, performance artist, and actress holds tight against the right side of the canvas, as if trying to hide from the viewer, to “sister,” which depicts a woman who looks like she has just been through a prizefight, and “unsichtbar,” in which the top part of the subject has been painted over in white, her face and head disappearing into the background. A bold mix of abstraction and figuration with a liberal use of white paint that melds into the small gallery space’s stark white walls, “wings and murmurs” beautifully displays Griffis’s confident brushstrokes and haunting color scheme, particularly in the ghostly “bruised kite hope flares,” which greets visitors as they enter the room. The show runs through December 16, with a special free event scheduled for December 8 at 7:30, “the paintings talk back,” in which poets Betty Harmon, Alystyre Julian, and Shelley Stenhouse will read pieces inspired by Griffis’s work, followed by an open dialogue and a musical performance by the artist.

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