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Tabitha Vevers: Lover's Eyes

October 11, 2019 - February 2, 2020

Gallery 3

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Tabitha Vevers explores themes of power, pain, love, and liberation in her prolific series Lover’s Eyes. Inspired by traditional eye miniatures, a genre of portrait jewelry that became the height of fashion in the Georgian era, Vevers embraces historic painting techniques to create contemporary, jewel-like eye portraits in oil on Ivorine. Once worn as emblems of illicit affairs, eye miniatures, also known as lover’s eyes, were popularized in the eighteenth century by the Prince of Wales (later George IV) who sent his lover a miniature portrait of his eye as a memento. Vevers appropriates subjects from art history and popular culture to cleverly re-imagine the traditional male gaze from the perspective of a contemporary woman. This exhibition will complement the Gibbes’ collection of miniature portraits. The first American miniature portraits were painted in Charleston, and today the Gibbes is home to one of the most prestigious portrait miniature collections in the United States.

<i>Johnny (after John Waters)</i> from <i>Series IV: Tears</i>, 2014, By Tabitha Vevers (American, b.1957); Oil on Ivorine; 3 x 3 3/4 inches on 12 x 12 inches panel; Collection of Andrew Mellen

Johnny (after John Waters) from Series IV: Tears, 2014, By Tabitha Vevers (American, b.1957); Oil on Ivorine; 3 x 3 3/4 inches on 12 x 12 inches panel; Collection of Andrew Mellen

<i>Untitled (after Kerry James Marshall)</i> from <i>Series I: Reversing the Gaze</i>, 2018, By Tabitha Vevers (American, b.1957); Oil on Ivorine with tintype frame and fabric; 2 3/4 x 3 1/4 inches in 7 x 7 1/2 inch frame; Collection of the artist, Courtesy of Bookstein Projects

Untitled (after Kerry James Marshall) from Series I: Reversing the Gaze, 2018, By Tabitha Vevers (American, b.1957); Oil on Ivorine with tintype frame and fabric; 2 3/4 x 3 1/4 inches in 7 x 7 1/2 inch frame; Collection of the artist, Courtesy of Bookstein Projects

<i>Jean-Michel (Basquiat)</i> from <i>Series V: Selfies</i>, 2015, By Tabitha Vevers (American, b.1957); Oil on Ivorine; 2 1/2 x 4 inches on 12 x 12 inches panel; Collection of Robert and Frances Kohler

Jean-Michel (Basquiat) from Series V: Selfies, 2015, By Tabitha Vevers (American, b.1957); Oil on Ivorine; 2 1/2 x 4 inches on 12 x 12 inches panel; Collection of Robert and Frances Kohler

<i>Checkmate: Lee + Man II (after Man Ray and Lee Miller)</i>, 2013, Oil on ivorine with metronome and hammer; 9 x 4 1/2 x 4 1/2 inches; Collection of the artist, Courtesy of Bookstein Projects; Photo: Naya Bricher

Checkmate: Lee + Man II (after Man Ray and Lee Miller), 2013, Oil on ivorine with metronome and hammer; 9 x 4 1/2 x 4 1/2 inches; Collection of the artist, Courtesy of Bookstein Projects; Photo: Naya Bricher

<i>Dora (after Man Ray)</i> from <i>Series III: Picasso and Man Ray</i>, 2013, By Tabitha Vevers (American, b. 1957); Oil on Ivorine; 2 5/8 x 3 1/4 inches on 12 x 12 inches panel; Collection of the artist, Courtesy of Bookstein Projects

Dora (after Man Ray) from Series III: Picasso and Man Ray, 2013, By Tabitha Vevers (American, b. 1957); Oil on Ivorine; 2 5/8 x 3 1/4 inches on 12 x 12 inches panel; Collection of the artist, Courtesy of Bookstein Projects

<i>Caballero (after El Greco)</i> from <i>Series II: Gaze of Desire</i>, 2013, By Tabitha Vevers (American, b. 1957); Oil on Ivorine; 2 3/4 x 3 1/2 inches on 9 x 12 inches panel; Collection of the artist, Courtesy of Bookstein Projects

Caballero (after El Greco) from Series II: Gaze of Desire, 2013, By Tabitha Vevers (American, b. 1957); Oil on Ivorine; 2 3/4 x 3 1/2 inches on 9 x 12 inches panel; Collection of the artist, Courtesy of Bookstein Projects

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