Haw Contemporary (2014)
Peregrine Honig's latest collection of large-scale oil paintings transform into backdrops for donor selfies; self-portraiture destined for digital immortality. With the use of Western religious iconography to create temporarily mounted parlors and paintings that feature large decorative rings and central radiations, every sitter becomes contextualized as a saint, royalty, or deity. Wreaths of flowers crown seated or absent central figures. Occupied or empty, the pieces offer a curated private space in a public gallery setting.
In line with the evolution of selfies, the portraits created within these paintings assist in the process of self-glorification. Online the act of self-aggrandizing encompasses many attitudes: sexual prowess, commercial innocence, postures of strength and power, positions of femininity and fertility. Similarly, these donor selfies reference the rich history of patrons commissioning artists to paint them into elaborate and decadent sets. In Honig's collection each sitter has the power to produce, edit, and digitally publish their own image. With the assistance of a collective hashtag, visitors take part in creating a contemporary, and constantly evolving, book of hours.
Haw Contemporary 2014