Denise Kupferschmidt

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Denise Kupferschmidt’s new Window and Cityscape works on paper depict the cycle of the sun as it fades in and out of her urban environment. She uses this repetition, the comfort of a routine, the stability of a normalized existence to speak to current collective feelings of sadness and loss. Kupferschmidt cites science journalist Zoë Schlanger writings on ‘Solastalgia’ (a word coined by philosopher Glenn Albrecht to describe the feeling of ‘the pain or sickness caused by the loss or lack of solace and the sense of isolation connected to the present state of one’s home and territory’). Her paintings depict ‘watching the earthly elements of home morph into something that feels remote, while we stay put’.

Denise Kupferschmidt in her studio | Queens, NY, July 2020

Denise Kupferschmidt
Window 1, 2020
Gouache and water based enamel on paper
18 x 12 inches (45.7 x 30.5 cm)

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Denise Kupferschmidt
Window 2, 2020
Gouache and water based enamel on paper
18 x 12 inches (45.7 x 30.5 cm)

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My focus is how I’m changing internally while the world around me changes, and how that changing self moves through an ever-evolving world in linear time. As I progress along the continuum of growth, my sense of self and how I look at the world is gradually and irrevocably altered, and yet life’s constant repetition imprints a template of sameness on each moment. The feelings of stability and familiarity imposed by this repetition are undermined by the strangeness and remoteness of how different our past selves are from who we are now and who we will become. Gradients of color and shadow act like a filmstrip indicating forward momentum, and the progression of time is seen. Focus is not only given to how the world through my eyes changes through time, but also what is empirically happening to the world around me. The doom of our future feels nearer every day and yet the days repeat with a mundane uniformity. Our responsibility as we progress through time is symbolized in footsteps, each step a choice along the path we choose. We can purposefully keep altering ourselves so that we can see the change in addition to the comforting repetition. We can look at the fixed path of our past and the series of small choices that created it and thereby understand our place in time.

I’m trying to capture what it feels like to have lost the stability of being grounded in the present moment because the flow of change is overpowering the familiar sense of repetition in the daily routine.

–Denise Kupferschmidt
July 2020

Denise Kupferschmidt
Window 3, 2020
Gouache and water based enamel on paper
12 x 18 inches (30.5 x 45.7 cm)

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Denise Kupferschmidt
Window 4, 2020
Gouache and water based enamel on paper
12 x 18 inches (30.5 x 45.7 cm)

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Denise Kupferschmidt
City Scape Drawing 1, 2019
Gouache and water based enamel on paper
19.75 x 25.5 inches (50.2 x 64.8 cm)

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Denise Kupferschmidt
City Scape Drawing 2, 2019
Gouache and water based enamel on paper
19.75 x 25.5 inches (50.2 x 64.8 cm)

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Denise Kupferschmidt
City Scape Drawing 3, 2019
Gouache and water based enamel on paper
19.75 x 25.5 inches (50.2 x 64.8 cm)

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Denise Kupferschmidt
City Scape Drawing 4, 2019
Gouache and water based enamel on paper
19.75 x 25.5 inches (50.2 x 64.8 cm)

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Denise Kupferschmidt
City Scape Drawing 5, 2019
Gouache and water based enamel on paper
19.75 x 25.5 inches (50.2 x 64.8 cm)

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Denise Kupferschmidt received her BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston. Recent solo exhibitions have been with Halsey McKay Gallery and Cooper Cole Gallery, Toronto. Her work has been included in numerous group exhibitions, including at BAM. Brooklyn;, Foxy Productions, NY; Eleven Rivington, NY; Nicole Klagsbrun, NY; and Tracey Williams, NY amongst others. She was an organizer of the itinerant group-show series Apartment Show. Her work has been featured on Contemporary Art Daily, Vogue, T Magazine, ArtNet, The L Magazine and TimeOut NY among others. Kupferschmidt is represented by Halsey McKay Gallery.

Denise Kupferschmidt
Window 5, 2020
Gouache and water based enamel on paper
18 x 12 inches (45.7 x 30.5 cm)

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Denise Kupferschmidt
Window 6, 2020
Gouache and water based enamel on paper
18 x 12 inches (45.7 x 30.5 cm)

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