Best Local Artist

Jamie Adams

For artist Jamie Adams, Jean Seberg's turn in Jean-Luc Godard's Breathless was nothing short of a revelation, inspiring him to embark on a six-year painterly exploration into the nature of celebrity, the male gaze and commercial sensuality. The resulting paintings, known as The Jeannie Series, are masterfully rendered figurative nudes in black and white that depict Seberg (and others) lolling about her Paris apartment from the Godard film. Though gorgeous to behold and undeniably erotic, the paintings work subtly and systematically to undermine what on first glance looks like little more than a man's cartoonish fantasy of female sexuality. The more time you spend with Adams' canvases, the more their inconsistencies appear, and Seberg, who at first seemed so familiar, reveals herself as androgynous and ultimately unknowable — a reflection of the artist's imagination that camouflages the true Seberg. Adams has since moved on from The Jeannie Series, exploring similar ideas in his colorful Niagara Series, which, if one of its paintings' inclusion in the upcoming State of the Art show at Crystal Bridges is any indication, is opening a rich new world of possibilities for this very talented artist.

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