Hope Gangloff’s contemporary paintings

Hope Gangloff is known for creating vibrant and truthful portraits of her friends as a way to share her view of modern American life. By capturing this generation of young adults in her illustrations and paintings, she documents this era’s struggle during these tumultuous economic times. Gangloff studied fine art at Cooper Union in New York. After leaving art school, Gangloff worked in a bronze foundry and made illustrations for publications such as the New York Times, the New Yorker, Spin Magazine, and Built by Wendy. Her work now hangs in galleries and museums around the world.

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Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum Curator Mónica Ramí­rez-Montagut says about Hope Gangloff’s works: “Her paintings and drawings make us feel her and her subjects and feel for them as well; they make us feel for ourselves and the period to which we belong. In the midst of the struggles of our current everyday lives, Hope finds both beauty and passion.”

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Her paintings of Brooklyn bohemians, primarily her friends caught seemingly unaware in moments of leisure, borrow heavily from late 19th- and early 20th-century expressionists such as Van Gogh, Egon Schiele, Gustave Klimt, and Suzanne Valadon; creating a sympathetic link between the historic avant-garde and post-postmodern hipsterism.

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Hope said, ” I was always looking for a way to articulate my friends’ senses of humor. Everyone’s so unique and interesting, so I tried to make drawings that highlighted or showcased what I really like about them.”

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There is no erotic element in Gangloff’s nudes, and they are no more exposed for being undressed. A sense of privacy, or at least separation, is established by means of their gazes; distant and non-confrontational, they convey a sense of aloofness. Here, as in many of Gangloff ‘s portraits, her subjects seem to be only physically present. What holds their attention the viewer can only imagine.

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