Allison Zuckerman - New Now London Thursday, December 9, 2021 | Phillips

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  • 'Conveying a deeply personal and idiosyncratic vision within my work is crucial to my artistic process. Therefore, I visually “sample” my work alongside art historical work.'
    —Allison Zuckerman

    Executed in 2017, Huntress and Scholar presents two figures mish-mashed in Giclée print and acrylic with the intentional appearance of a collaged display. The body language established between the women creates narrative tension and a sense of the passage of time. Allison Zuckerman notes, ‘this act of self-cannibalization makes for an ongoing dialogue from painting to painting. Each painting is an inextricable link in a long line of storytelling and character development’.i  


    Through the definitive juxtaposition of Pop imagery and art historical references, Zuckerman challenges established definitions of female representation, explaining: ‘I am primarily influenced by art history and the reality that women are often the subjects of paintings and sculptures but rarely the makers. I seek to re-tell art history within my work’.ii She starts each project by mapping out the composition through digital collage. Images are cut out and arranged on Photoshop before printed onto large-scale canvases with details added by hand. This allows her to bring the composition to life and engages a conversation between traditional art making and the omni-presence of digital media in contemporary culture. The viewer is thus confronted with the result of contrasting imagery between the fusion of machine processed fantasy and elements of classical artistic touches.  


    Throughout her practice, Zuckerman draws upon art historical sources by male artists. In the present work, she refers to the common method of reading a painting from left to right. Influenced by western literary practice, this custom is well institutionalised, placing importance on the subject first appearing toward the left of the canvas. The viewer’s eye is then trained to move toward the right where the subsequent figure is sheltered. Throughout the western canon, the man is often painted on the left toward the wilderness and the open prospects of the outside world. The women are often painted within the confines, toward the interior of a domesticated space. Huntress and Scholar exemplifies this trope as the Huntress on the left walks toward the unknown and the Scholar is seated closer toward the sanctuary of the familiar. Zuckerman however challenges this idea through the empowerment of both women in their gaze toward the left where the possibility of leaving and pursuing something else is a viable choice. 


    Jean Antoine Watteau, The Enchanter, circa 1712. Musée des Beaux-Arts de Troyes, Image: Bridgeman Images

    Born in 1990 in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Zuckerman moved to New York in 2015 following her MFA at the School of Art Institute of Chicago. Her work was catapulted to critical acclaim following her first solo show which took place at the influential Rubell Family Collection in Miami in 2017. Subsequently, she has extended her artistic practice into adjacent fields through collaborative ventures undertaken with Louis Vuitton for Vogue Italia and a large-scale mural for Veuve Clicquot created in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The charismatic collaging of familiar imagery, accented with humorous touches and underpinned with political intent, has established Zuckerman as a rising star in the world of contemporary art.

    i Allison Zuckerman, quoted in Jo Thomson, ‘Allison Zuckerman: Flattening the Hierarchies of Art,’ Metal Magazine, online
    ii Allison Zuckerman, quoted in Leila Antakly, ‘Artist Allison Zuckerman,’ Ninu Nina, 5 February 2021, online

    • Provenance

      Kravets Wehby Gallery, New York
      Acquired from the above by the present owner in 2018


Huntress and Scholar

signed and dated ‘A Zuckerman 2017’ on the overlap
acrylic and archival CMYK on canvas
213 x 170 cm (83 7/8 x 66 7/8 in.)
Executed in 2017.

Full Cataloguing

£30,000 - 50,000 

Sold for £100,800

Contact Specialist

Simon Tovey
Specialist, Head of New Now Sale
+44 20 7318 4084

New Now

London Auction 9 December 2021