BFA Thesis Exhibit

Cynthia Stasio


Artist Statement

I am working to change the way the female nude has historically been perceived in painting and drawing. My work incorporates the figures in a feminist manor, merging the concept of what a woman is expected to be and what a woman is; multidimensional and complex. I take agency in the intensive process of deconstructing the images and building them back up through mixed media.
Throughout the history of art making, the female nude can be seen being painted, sculpted, and drawn by male artists. In these works, the nude is often hyper sexualized by the men that use them as content which is revealing to how women have been viewed in the past. How the body is represented in art has changed over time as artistic expression evolves.

Previously, women in art have been more passive and were seen as objects of desire. This work references women empowering themselves, taking back ownership of their bodies and embracing their sexuality. My pieces pull from the historical context of the nude and merge with contemporary attitudes and material explorations.

Using the female body as reference, I create digital line drawings that establish the composition. This allows me to push the ways I can manipulate the human form by breaking them down into line. I then translate the digital pieces onto canvas, panel or paper using charcoal. The majority of my pieces contain charcoal and oil paint; the history of these mediums goes back just as far as the female nude in art. The interwoven and disrupting forms create the focal point of the work. Experimenting in mark making, while working with layering, pigmentation and transparency creates dynamic compositions. The additive and reduction process I use to abstract the body can lead to a completely different way of viewing the body. A feminist view point of the female nude.