Image Credit: Chantal Joffe. Courtesy the artist and Victoria Miro, London / Venice.

The Lowry arts centre in Salford is to host a major exhibition by the acclaimed figurative painter, Chantal Joffe, Royal Academician, this summer.

Entitled Personal Feeling is the Main Thing, the exhibition will open to the public on Sat 19 May as part of The Lowry’s biennial Week 53 festival (17 – 28 May) and run until Sun 2 September.

It will feature around 50 paintings from throughout Joffe’s career.

Chantal Joffe brings a combination of insight and integrity, as well as psychological and emotional force, to the genre of figurative art. In her depiction of women or girls, sometimes in groups but recently in iconic portraits, she explores themes including the transition from childhood to adolescence and motherhood.

The works confront the physicality of the human body and the complexities of human emotions in a remarkable combination of clarity, honesty and empathetic warmth.

Works on display will include: The Squid and the Whale, 2017; Esme in a Yellow Dress, 2016; and My Mother with Fern, 2017.

Shown alongside will be works, selected by Joffe, by the German expressionist painter Paula Modersohn-Becker (1876-1907). Modersohn-Becker died shortly after giving birth to her first child, at the age of 31. Today, she is recognised as being among the first female artists to paint a nude self-portrait and, later, a series of self-portraits while she was pregnant.

Julia Fawcett OBE, chief executive of The Lowry, said: “We’re absolutely thrilled to have Chantal’s work on display in the galleries as a flagship element of our Week 53 programme and for our gallery visitors throughout the summer. Her portrayal of women and girls is unique and thought-provoking and chimes with both the ‘coming of age’ focus of Week 53 and the wider, national celebration of women in 2018.”

Joffe was recently selected to create a major public work of art for Whitechapel Station, a new station on the Elizabeth Line which forms part of Crossrail. Her work, A Sunday Afternoon in Whitechapel, is part of the Crossrail Art Programme.


Chantal Joffe – Personal Feeling is the Main Thing
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Chantal Joffe – Personal Feeling is the Main Thing

Regarded as one of the most distinctive and uncompromising figurative artists working today, Chantal Joffe’s fearless paintings of women and girls often share glimpses of her own relationship with her daughter, while exploring transitions into adolescence and motherhood.

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