American Medium presents “Private Accounts,” Vanessa Gully Santiago’s first solo exhibition with the gallery. Santiago, a painter, draftsperson and video artist, works with the female form to investigate structures of femininity, sexuality, power, and surveillance. At points humorous and at times disturbing, Santiago’s work portrays women encountering technology and themselves at moments of submission, power, and conflict.
Santiago’s work operates as a reflection of what she sees as the modern digital experience of women. In this exhibition she focuses her gaze on the lone figure negotiating, interpreting, and being challenged by various forms of personal technology. The works in “Private Accounts” are stylized portraits of private, psychological experiences influenced and recorded by consumer devices, transmuting the ephemeral into a recorded event. Each tableau is pregnant with emotion yet the figures appear stoic – seemingly unaffected by their actions, the actions of the other, or our gaze. We become bystanders, onlookers, and participants of these detached, alienated characters and their fetishistic activities.
Vanessa Gully Santiago (born 1984) is an artist based in New York City. She holds a BFA from The Cooper Union and an MFA from Rutgers University, where she was the recipient of the Paul Robeson Emerging Young Artist Award. She has exhibited her work at 247365 in New York, Peninsula Art Space in Brooklyn, Smart Objects in Los Angeles, and the Chicago Underground Film Festival. Santiago has participated in residencies at the Vermont Studio Center and Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild.