The five winners of The White Room Gallery’s online juried contest bring together a range of personalities, mediums, perspectives and talent, from Belgian-born, SoHo-based painter Serge Strosberg — trained by a German expressionist painter and inspired by realist painter Lucien Freud — to David Mandel, whose fantasy jewelry and work with Swarovski has adorned top models on the runways of Victoria’s Secret fashion shows.
Together, they are StrosbergMandel.
“New York artists Serge Strosberg and David Mandel have fused the visual language of Flemish and German portraiture with fantasy jewelry and fabric design,” according to a press release. “Both artists present a very contemporary and unlikely mixture of works heavily inspired by their personal histories characterized by decadence and eccentricity of the New York City club era, particularly the many meme’s of London club personality Leigh Bowery and Imperial Court drag — adding an exuberant and human touch to the contemporary art scene.”
The duo will exhibit alongside three fellow artists in “Positive Space” — opening Saturday, May 19, at the Bridgehampton gallery — including visual artist Cindy Press, who worked as a fashion designer with artists such as Peter Max, interpreting his paintings into wearable art, before returning to her own art practice after taking time to raise her two daughters.
“My original goal was to create paintings that are simply striking and beautiful, getting back to my roots of fashion illustration. As I started my process of reinvention I found myself drawn to images of women that are edgy and sexy,” Press said in an artist’s statement. “Collecting clippings from magazines and editorials as inspiration, I work in a realistic manner depicting portraits and figures of females. When I begin to work I notice a peculiar shift in my thought process. I am no longer concerned about the beauty of the image but instead how it speaks to me, what does the expression or pose represent to me? My focus changes entirely as I consider a history of experiences while I paint. I think about my life, my family, and friends. The relationships, the love, the hurt, the anguish and my own personal conflicts come into play. There is so much more behind a person’s appearance. Through the cult of beauty in contemporary mass media I am investigating the psychological complexity of women.”
Painter Alicia Gitlitz draws inspiration from the outdoors and her love and passion for travel, she explained. “My artwork is a tribute to how awe inspiring nature can be with its endless opportunities to express emotion,” she said. “The world is a blank canvas waiting to be painted and I can see all of the possibilities in my mind’s eye.”
Philadelphia native Seek One grew up on the graffiti and skateboard scene, expressing himself first through street art before, in 2015 — when he faced vandalism charges — was forced to transition to canvas.
“I would like to make Seek One a brand that all clients and followers can relate to,” he said in a statement. “All work is done on 100-percent handmade wood panel and usually includes pieces of vintage media, acrylics, oils, spray paint, metal flake and other various mediums. My goal is to bring unique pieces of fine art that everyone can connect with.
An artists’ reception will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. at the gallery, located at 2415 Main Street in Bridgehampton, and will remain on view through May 28. For more information, call (631) 237-1481 or visit thewhiteroom.gallery.