Julie Curtiss. Soft Shells

7 Oct 2017 – 5 Nov 2017

106 Green

New York
New York, United States


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106 Green is proud to present “Soft Shells,” a solo show of paintings by Julie Curtiss.


Julie Curtiss’ paintings are funny, strange, and disquieting. Painted in bright, sometimes acidic colors, they are the descendants of film noir and Pop. Her images are pieced together with the abrupt graphic edge of collage, and an internal logic that conjures a surrealist dream. 

Anonymous women with hidden faces exude power and mystery in Curtiss’ world. With deliberate cropping and taut juxtaposition, we are given access to intimate, unsettling spaces. The artifice of gender roles is hinted at, then twisted. Braided hair and sexy attire are given pronounced attention – alluring, textured details that unnerve. Sharp, brightly painted nails stem from big-knuckled hands holding desserts, covering identities. Breasts point straight ahead with bullet-like nipples. Flesh is rendered in a range of hues. Classical beauty is subsumed by an aesthetic much darker, more sexual, and psychologically charged. The paintings are both intoxicating and grotesque. It is as if the erotic tableaus of Courbet and Manet were infused with the illustrative directness of comic books and the wackiness of the Chicago Imagists. 

"Working from imagination and with ideas of narration, I utilize recurring elements from one painting to another, or frame the subjects of my paintings very narrowly, creating a form of suspense. My artworks are psychological. By omitting parts of an image or suggesting abnormal situations, I would like to contrast a feeling of familiarity with surrealism."  - Julie Curtiss

Julie Tuyet Curtiss (b. 1982) lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She received she MFA from Ecole Nationale Superieur des Beaux-Arts, Paris in 2006. Most recently, she has shown her work at The Hole, NY; White Cube, London; Regina Rex, NY; Monya Rowe, St. Augustine, FL; and Spring Break Art Fair, NY. Her work is included in “Hectate”, opening in November at Various Small Fires (VSF), LA. Her paintings have been reviewed in The Times, London; Whitehot Magazine, and NY Magazine to mention a few.

106 Green is located at 104 Green Street in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.

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Exhibiting artists

Julie Curtiss


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