NORA SEE grew up in Allentown, Pennsylvania, where, as a child, she taught herself to draw. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting from the Corcoran College of Art and Design and a Master of Fine Arts from the University of New Orleans. She works and lives in New Orleans.
In her oil paintings, Nora See renders framed paintings on walls with which human figures interact. Through her classical painting style and the use of historical visual references, her pieces contrast the past with the present. By combining these temporal elements with the use of frames as containers, she explores themes of consumption, imprisonment, and liberation.
Nora’s work has been exhibited in a variety of venues and is also in the personal collection of Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds.
“Good artists borrow. Great artists steal.” A quote oft attributed to various sources that was never actually uttered by any of them. Though Mark Twain elaborated on the sentiment: “Ninety-nine parts of all things that proceed from the intellect are plagiarisms.” In the Framed Series, I use my 1% contribution to combine issues of consumption with my autobiography.
I paint copies of copies of paintings within paintings to reference the appropriation, commodification, and altered continuum of art. My paintings of paintings are based on photographs of originals to perpetuate the continual distillation of form, given the ease with which images are presently exchanged and modified. Further, by reducing historically significant paintings to framed objects hanging on walls, I augment art as a commodity and reconcile the conflict between the artificially assigned monetary value of artworks with the reality that they are simply swirls of paint. In this way, I am also acknowledging the literality of my own work.
I have also altered each copied painting to personalize the context of the pieces and address specific autobiographical ideas. These ideas relate to a range of both recent and distant experiences, both funny and sad.
Although my initial renderings are digital image composites, my medium of choice is oil paint, applied in transparent layers, using the image on the computer screen as a reference. In addition to its lush visual properties, I enjoy the flexibility of oil paint in making acute renderings as well as the evolution of the imagery from paint to digital and back to paint in further protracting both the distillation and evolution of form.
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Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds, private collection, New York, USA
UNIVERSITY OF NEW ORLEANS, New Orleans, LA 2015
Master of Fine Arts, Painting
Honors: Fine Arts Graduate Talent Scholarship
TULANE LAW SCHOOL, New Orleans, LA 2004
Honors: CALI Excellence for the Future Award; 2002 and 2003
Public Interest Law Foundation Fellow
CORCORAN COLLEGE OF ART AND DESIGN, Washington, D.C. 2000
Bachelor of Fine Arts, Fine Arts
Honors: Graduated with Honors; Dean’s List; Dean’s Merit Scholarship; Corcoran
College of Art and Design Scholarship; Fine Arts Student of the Year Award;
Dr. William A. Newman Painting Award; District of Columbia Incentive Grant
FRAMED. UNO St. Claude Gallery, New Orleans, LA 2015
FASHION FUSION. Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans, LA 2005
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
BOMBAY SAPPHIRE ARTISAN SERIES NEW ORLEANS SEMI-FINALS. 2016
LeMieux Galleries, New Orleans, LA
(Juried by Andre Guichard, Christy Wood, and Jordan Blanton)
ART HYSTERICAL. Jonathan Ferrara Gallery, New Orleans, LA 2016
(Curated by Matthew Weldon Showman)
MASTERS AS MUSE. Gallery Orange, New Orleans, LA 2015