Ship of Theseus, an exhibition of self-portraits by painter Lauren E. Peters, will be on view in the Mezzanine Gallery from December 7-28, 2018. Peters received a 2018 Individual Artist Fellowship in Painting. The artist will host a free opening reception on Friday, December 7 from 5-8 p.m.
Greek and Roman references and the understanding of self/identity have been recurring themes in Peters’ work. Her choice of the exhibition title, Ship of Theseus, is a reference to thought experiment that raises the question of whether a ship—standing for an object in general—that has had all of its components replaced remains fundamentally the same object. In her artwork, Peters explores the fluid and multifaceted nature of identity through a series of self-portraits in which she wears a variety of clothing and props. Peters’ colorful personas fill the foreground and they frequently gaze directly at the viewer.
While the costumes may be thought of as disguises, they are created to bring the different realities beneath our “normal” appearance to light. Peters explains:
“If I put on a costume for a self-portrait, is that more or less me? There are such a variety of changes that humans undergo over the course of a lifetime or even days; and these paintings, under the wigs and bright colors, struggle to find the truth at the core.”
The Mezzanine Gallery is open to the public weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and is located in the Carvel State Office Building, 820 N. French Street, Wilmington.