Lorraine Shemesh

For more Information:


Lorraine Shemesh investigates and abstracts the human form. Her paintings marry figurative techniques with the concerns of abstract expressionism, and her work in other media––including drawing, fiber, paper, and clay––reflects this dialogue. A focus on intertwining movement is the connecting thread that links her various bodies of work. Shemesh often uses professional dancers as her models, anonymous and suspended in space, the lines and curves of their forms suggestive of motion and meaning.

She was born in Jersey City, New Jersey, and received her B.F.A. Magna Cum Laude from Boston University. She was awarded a fellowship to study in Rome, Italy, later returning to Philadelphia to complete her graduate work at the Tyler School of art in Philadelphia, where she earned an M.F.A. in painting in 1973. Shemesh has taught painting and drawing at the Rhode Island School of Design and later at Amherst College. She had her first solo show with Gerald Peters Gallery in 2016.

Shemesh is the recipient of a Yaddo Fellowship, Rhode Island State Council for the Arts Grant in Painting, a Distinguished Alumni Award in Visual Arts, two Kiln God Residencies from the Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts in Maine, and was an invited artist at the Fire & Form Symposium in Austria. Her work can be found in public, private, and museum collections throughout the United States and abroad. She has exhibited her work nationally and internationally at The Butler Institute of American Art in Ohio, The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, The National Academy of Design Museum in New York, Rhode Island School of Design Museum, DeCordova Museum, Musee de Carouge in Switzerland, Galerij Marc Van Meensel in Zelem-Halem, Belgium, and in Landesverband Bildender Kunstler in Kiel, Germany, among others. She was elected to the National Academy of Design in 2005.  Shemesh lives and works in New York City.