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Mary Crenshaw

Mary Crenshaw lives and works in Milan, Italy. Crenshaw works across disciplines in painting, drawing and sculpture. Immediacy features in all of her work and is rooted in Eastern philosophical notions of force and energy, asopposed to the way of thinking about strength in Western culture. SinologistFranç ois Jullien declares that the Chinese have no concept of soul, but that of avital, distinctive life-force. Jullien describes how instead of Western ideas ofsuffering and endurance, Eastern convictions include flexibility and awareness.I aspire to transmit this kind of energy to the viewer. Crenshaw uses shapes and marks and lumps of clay as starting points forexperimentation, manipulating the material, and exploiting its raw components.Young male migrants in most Italian cities once were on every street cornerpanhandling, arms stretched out holding baseball caps as coin recipients. Finding thissilent imploring poignant, Crenshaw started depicting in my work the jutted armsholding hats or begging bowls. Eventually, this led to abbreviating just the body parts.It occurred to her that her feelings of confusion translated well with the disjointedparts, and later with the pandemic, she channeled her fear into chaotic imagery.Humor and tragedy going hand in hand, sneakers, pointy heels and blue jeans reflectcontemporary life, and indicate the times.

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