Peggy Preheim
14 January - 20 February 1999
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Press Release

Bonakdar Jancou Gallery is pleased to present its third exhibition of work by Peggy Preheim consisting of twenty new pencil drawings, five black and white photographs and one cast silver sculpture.  Executed with uncanny technical virtuosity in each medium, Preheim's work conveys the innocence and enigmatic intensity of childhood, referencing the cycles of life, death and creation with powerfully symbolic imagery.

In Preheim's drawings, a lattice-work of interpenetrating voids, figures and geometric forms provoke optical, structural, and psychological resonance. Using imagery derived from found photographs, Preheim's skill is such that the exquisitely rendered drawings often possess an even finer grain, deeper focus and more luminous presence than their source. As a result, they call up a world which suggests affinities with the aesthetics of fin-de-siècle Symbolism.

Preheim's photographic works are hauntingly stark and highly contrasted images of the artist's own air-dried clay sculpture. Abstract child-like forms, infants and skulls are posed, juxtaposed and cropped, engaging the viewer and referencing the cycle of life. Similarly, the new sculpture entitled "New Man" represents its own story of resurrection and personal history.  An attempt by the artist to recreate a lost work, the piece was remade with new form and composition.

The basis for the power and intensity in Peggy Preheim's work may be found in the artist's unconscious projection or identification with the images she appropriates. Thus, she reverses the practices of Pop and Conceptual artists whose strategies of appropriation are designed to deplete the meaning of the image through parody and repetition or to critique the ideology and institutions that contextualize and promote the image. 

Following her last exhibition at the gallery, Preheim was been featured in "The Best of the Season" at the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary, Ridgefield, Connecticut. Recently, Preheim was the subject of a one person exhibition at the Lukacs Gallery, Fairfield University, Fairfield, Connecticut.