Perfect Families: Oil Portraits by Gwyneth Leech Depict the Diversity of the Real American Family

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Same sex parenting, transracial adoption, mixed-race marriage and having a child with Down Syndrome are all subjects of a painting exhibition which runs October 1st - 29th at Franklin 54 Gallery in New York City. The exhibition, entitled "Perfect Families" comprises oil portraits by Gwyneth Leech of 10 non-traditional or extraordinary families, all friends and neighbors of the artist.

What does it mean to be a conventional family in America today? The painter, Gwyneth Leech confronts this question with compelling and sensitive oil portraits of real families surrounding her in her New York City neighborhood.

Same sex parenting, mixed race marriage, transracial adoption and raising a child with special needs are all part of a vivid tapestry of neighbors and friends which she has captured in 20 new oil paintings on wood panel.

"I was inspired by the experience of suddenly finding myself in a "conspicuous family" after my daughter was born with Down Syndrome in 2003. I was astonished by the warmth shown by so many people towards my child, and have found myself hearing many stories about families feeling different or unusual in some may. I decided that such diversity was in need of commemoration." - Gwyneth Leech

Confronting stereotypes and entrenched cultural attitudes, Gwyneth Leech has tackled one of the more contested areas of our contemporary culture: the definition of the American family.

About the Artist
Gwyneth Leech received her BFA and graduate degree in drawing & painting from Edinburgh College of Art in Scotland. She has a permanent installation of "Stations of the Cross" consisting of 14 paintings at St. Paul's Church in Norwalk, CT. This installation has drawn extensive public attention through its controversial setting in the midst of conflict in the contemporary Middle East. Leech has exhibited widely across the United states and Britain. Her work had been exhibited in the National Portrait Gallery in London. She has won many grants & awards and her paintings are in numerous private, public & corporate collections. The artist lives & works in New York City.

The exhibition runs from October 1st through October 29th,
at Franklin 54 Gallery, 181 Christopher Street, New York, NY 10014.

Hours are Wednesday through Saturday 11AM to 6 PM, and Sunday 12 - 5 PM.

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Joyce Pommer
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