'Narcissism and The Self-Portrait' at The Safe Harbors of the Hudson

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The term narcissism is thought to have originated in Greek mythology with Narcissus, who fell in love with his own image reflected in a pool of water. Today, a symptom of a growing narcissistic society is made apparent in the trend of taking images of oneself with a Smartphone, a process known as a selfie. However, images created by the self, for the love of self, such as those on social networks, can also be seen as part of a long history of the self-portraiture genre.

On Saturday, Sept. 27. from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., there will be an artist reception for the exhibit, "Narcissism and the Self-Portrait" at the Safe Harbors of the Hudson Ann St. Gallery.

Throughout Western civilization, the self-portrait has been the artist's most intimate personal legacy, tracing its origins to antiquity, triumphing during the Renaissance and still practiced in contemporary art today. This exhibition, "Narcissism and The Self-Portrait," investigates similar parallels between the technological camera phone "selfie" with those that occur in collage, ceramics, oil paintings, drawings and sculpture, or other artistic mediums that lend themselves to self-absorbed, visual replications of the self.

The self-portraits on view highlight and explore the artist's self-conscious awareness of themselves and issues of identity, with the specific goal of sharing that personal view with a larger community. However, these self-portraits combine a quality of acute observation of physical characteristics that requires self-knowledge coupled with artistic skill and technical bravura, qualities that are lacking in the cultural phenomenon of the Smartphone selfie.

Artists featured are Jeanne Anderton, Willow Bader, Kevin Byrd, Elizabeth Castaldo, Melanie Chikofsky, Andrea Cote,James Doran, Nicole Foran, Ghi Fremaux, Ginnie Gardiner, Erica Hauser, Alexandra Iosub, Gabe Kenney, Caridad B. Kolb, Roberto Lugo, Joetta Maue, Susan Mastrangelo, Lacey McKinney, Brian Everett Miller, Kate Missett, Anne Mormile, Abby Potts, Erin M. Riley, Kevin Rohde, Richard Taddei, Kelly Thiel, and Jane Zweibel.

The exhibition is on view through Saturday, Nov. 22, 2014.

The Safe Harbors of the Hudson Ann St. Gallery is a nonprofit art gallery specializing in contemporary emerging and established artists. The gallery is located at 104 Ann St. in Newburgh, and hours are Monday through Thursday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information regarding "Narcissism and the Self-Portrait" and the Ann St. Gallery, contact Virginia Walsh, director at 845-784-1146 or vwalsh@annstreetgallery.org, or visit www.annstreetgallery.org.

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