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Mickayel Thurin - Kindred Spirits

  • Gross McCleaf Gallery 127 South 16th Street Philadelphia, PA, 19102 United States (map)
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November 2-30, 2018

Opening Reception: Friday, November 2, 5-7 pm


These paintings are portraits using my immediate family and close friends as the models. Most of these folks I have painted many times over. I generally like to work with those I know very well. Part of this is because after you know someone well and they know you, you lose some of the niceties. You are both more authentic versions of yourselves and that is when you can really get down to business. - Mickayel Thurin


Mickayel Thurin captures the spirit of her sitters with a personal and distinctive hand. She chooses her subjects from the loved ones in her life. The resulting paintings share the intimacy that can only result from an artist who fully understands the nuances of her sitter's posture, gesture, attitude, or thoughts. A preoccupation with likeness or even the reaction of a sitter to the appearance of her own portrait is not the artist's primary concern. Thurin searches for something deeper which allows her to digress from outward appearances and creates a space for her to capture something which only she may see.


While working with those whom she know well, Thurin is also absorbed with the creation of something new and unique. Competing considerations, informed by both familiarity and curiosity, operate in dialogue and result in paintings which reveal both considerations; neither one dominating the other. Primarily using acrylic paint on canvas or panel, Thurin does not hesitate to bring in additional materials - collage, watercolor, ink, stitching, or other forms of embellishment - if she feels it is necessary for the painting to communicate aspects of her experience and discovery. The result of her process is a painting with dramatic compositional elements, vibrant colors, and textured surfaces informed by an exceptional sensitivity to the sitter's presence.


Thurin is a graduate of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and the University of Pennsylvania. Her work has appeared in numerous regional exhibits, including the Perkins Center for the Arts, Woodmere Art Museum, Wayne Arts Center, and the Main Line Art Center. This is her first solo exhibition at Gross McCleaf Gallery.

Earlier Event: November 2
Theta Movement Showcase
Later Event: November 2
Merryll Saylan - This is Your Life