New American Paintings


Tajh Rust

Juror’s Pick p110

ommunicating effectively with his sitters, Tajh Rust situates them within architectural spaces with a deliberation that belies the poses they assume. In (2018), a cobalt environment envelops two reclining figures: one gazes into space, lips parted, while the other meets the viewer’s eyes, the hint of a smile and human connection on her lips. Like other works in Rust’s series, expresses the power of human stories through literary and cinematic references to the experiences of people of color. The work recalls Yaa Gyasi’s book (2016), in which characters converse about the mysteries of the ocean. Seemingly sure and comfortable in their surroundings, the two figures foreground tenderness and vulnerability through the lens of their mutual presentness.

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