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Women visual artists shone in Village show

BY THE VILLAGE SUN | Women have the power. And they have the art, too.

Fifty women artists from around the globe recently showed their work at the “Spring Forward” exhibition at St. John’s in the Village’s Revelation Gallery, at 224 Waverly Place.

Eva Mueller with her piece from the “Spring Forward” exhibit. This was how she felt one day during the pandemic, she explained. (Photo by The Village Sun)

The event, which ran during March, was co-curated by Arantxa X. Rodriguez and Heidi E. Russell. The Village Sun went by on closing night and got photos of some of the artists with their works that they had taken down off the wall.

Heidi Russell, a fine-art photographer who lives in the Village, co-curated the show. This piece, shot 15 years ago, was of a storefront on Fifth Ave. “I take photos that look like they’re manipulated but they’re not,” she said.
Mary (Linda) Morales is a senior photographer at NYC Health + Hospitals. (Photo by The Village Sun)

It was the perfect time for the show since March is International Women’s History Month.

The International Women Artists’ Salon, which Russell founded in 2003, was the event’s sponsor.

Artist Arantxa Rodriguez, a co-curator of the show, created the charcoal work at top. (Photo by The Village Sun)
Collette Tompkins, left, and Eliza Boyer, became friends while students at S.V.A. Tompkins’s contribution to the show was a video of a sexist pig who is turned into a ham and then literally eaten by a woman he wronged. Boyer’s piece included an ottoman with a plant growing on top of it, placed in front of a mirror, all of which, she said, represented “growth, resilience and reflection,” things she was going through at the time she created it. (Photo by The Village Sun)

Half of the artists in the show were from IWAS and the other half are artists that Rodriguez brought to the exhibit. The artists, who hailed from 23 different countries, ranged in age from art-school students up to 89.

Hannah Reiman played piano at both the exhibit’s opening and closing. At the closing she performed a world premiere of a new composition of hers and also Joni Mitchell songs. (Photo by Andrea Young)
Andrea Young, a transgender artist, holds a photo of her by Annie Yan. (Photo by The Village Sun)
Andrea Young with her photo of a female burlesque performer. She said she admired the dancer’s fearlessness. (Photo by The Village Sun)

Russell, who lives in the West Village Houses, and Rodriguez, who is from Mexico City and attended the School of Visual Arts, first met two years ago at an open studios event in Chelsea.

Annie Yan with an intricate line drawing she filled in with color. (Photo by The Village Sun)
Orly Benun, a fine-art photographer who lives in the West Village Houses and Israel, took this shot of young Bedouin girls at a casual resort area in the Sinai. The girl at left never wears a veil, so put her hand in front of her face for the photo. (Photo by The Village Sun)

They hope to make the co-curated women’s exhibit an ongoing annual affair, possibly even held in multiple cities.

Due to the pandemic, in addition to an actual opening, the exhibit also created a virtual opening on video, in which each artist described her piece on display. Village pianist Hannah Reiman performed at both the opening and closing nights.

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