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.
Peregrine Honig was born in San Francisco, California, in 1976, and studied at the Kansas City Art Institute. Honig’s work is included in the permanent collections of the Albright Knox, Buffalo, NY; Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.; the Milwaukee Art Museum; the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington D.C.; the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; and Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Connecticut. Honig has had solo and group exhibitions at Dwight Hackett Projects in Santa Fe, Geschiedle Gallery in Chicago, and Larissa Goldstein, in New York. Her work has been included in numerous group exhibitions, including The Dianne and Sandy Besser Collection ( San Francisco de Young Museum of Art ); The Random and the Ordered: New Prints (International Print Center, New York); Comic Release: Negotiating Identity for A New Generation (Regina Gouger Miller Gallery, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh); and The Perception of Appearance: A Decade of Contemporary American Figure Drawing (Frye Art Museum, Seattle). Peregrine is a recipient of the Art Omi International Artists’ Residency, the Charlotte Street Fund, The Lighton International Artists Exchange, A Rocket Grant, and an Inspiration Grant. She recently produced a magazine titled Widow, in collaboration with Landfall Press, that explores the relationship between fashion and art. Peregrine Honig came in second on the first season of Bravo’s Work of Art. She recently returned from two month a residency in Buenos Aires, Argentina.