The vivid oil paintings of Jenny Morgan capture an honesty about her subjects, drawn in a candid moment in the nude when they are at their most vulnerable. The Brooklyn based artist’s electrifying figurative work, gracing the cover of Hi-Fructose Vol. 39, balances abstraction and realism, combining beautiful design aesthetics with her subject’s unique complexion and emotion. Morgan herself has described her work as “psychological portraits”, focused on presenting the sitter’s psychological state.
Perhaps one of the most striking and recognizable characteristics of Morgan’s work is her colorful palette, which takes precedent in the 11 new paintings she created for her UK solo debut, “Turning the Tide”, opening today at Beers London. Her new body of work expresses an exploration into new color relationships, mixing brights with grey scale tones inspired by lunar patterns.
The title of her show is a reference to the moon’s power to control the tides, caused by the combined effects of gravitational forces exerted by the Moon, Sun, and rotation of the Earth. It is a power that Morgan relates to the duality of the human psyche. In her words: “the act of reversing the direction of energy and thought by transforming the darkness to light, and inversely, turning lightness to dark and revealing the psychological shadow.”
“I feel as though I naturally teeter along many lines and find that quality of the work both frustrating and empowering. For me, defining individuality in a portrait is to embed the painting with a soul or sensation of a specific person.” – Jenny Morgan, Hi-Fructose Vol. 39.