School 33 Art Center



03/09/2018 - 04/28/2018

An exhibition of paintings by Lydia Pettit
BIG SEXY, an exhibition of paintings by Lydia Pettit, is an exploration of what it means to live after experiencing abuse, and how to come to terms with and respect the body you’re given. After years of unhealthy and traumatic relationships resulting from warped self-image, the artist uses painting to construct worlds that describe the emotional shifts and waves that one goes through in recovery. Pettit’s compositions shift between confrontational and minimized figures, each representing the duality of the strength survivors of abuse are "supposed" to feel, and the fear and doubt they carry with them. Color mirrors emotion, bold brushstrokes emphasize thick flesh, and depictions of tender moments in the bathtub are followed by those representing the melodrama of depression and panic. In BIG SEXY, Pettit seeks to reclaim authority over her image - she’s sharing her own fat, white, unconventional body, and her life inside of it.

Lydia Pettit is an artist and curator from Towson, Maryland. After graduating in 2014 from the Maryland Institute College of Art, she opened Platform Arts Center, a studio building, and Platform Gallery, a contemporary art gallery that focused on showing local and regional artists. She ran the gallery with her partner until 2017, and is currently focusing on her painting practice. Pettit is a two time recipient of the Elizabeth Greensheilds grant for representational art. She currently lives and works in Baltimore, Maryland.

Image credit: Lydia Pettit, Big Sexy