This weekend, Chandran Gallery hosted the debut NY solo exhibition of Paris-based painter, Inès Longevial. The  3-day pop-up show at 329 Broome Street, Longevial's Grandes Espérances featured a series of 13 new paintings and 6 new drawings in the artist's first showcase in the United States since 2018. The Spring 2018 cover artist made the work entirely during a residency in NYC, influenced by the color and light of her time on America’s east coast and the long history of studio painters who thrived in the City. Along with her new paintings, Longevial and Chandran Gallery released a special print in an edition of 60, signed and numbered, available during the pop-up exhibition. 

“I make exhibitions through which I seek myself, to  find answers and to escape other truths,” Longevial said during the making of Grandes Espérances. “Before this show, I spent weeks without painting. I thought about all the things that make me suffer and stop me from painting, like some of my relationships, my misunderstandings, my contrary feelings, my fears. I tried to nest them together and understand what their links were.”

From what we saw at the show, the result is some of the artist’s most personal to date, portraits of herself in various stages of happiness and struggle, fear and contentment. The artist’s incessant search for form, texture and colors marry with the zones of feelings and emotions symbolized as almost mystical alliances. The artist cites a quote from French historian Michel Pastoureau as an influence on her new works: "The being must take precedence over appearing." This plays into Longevial's ability to let spontaneity infiltrate her works, an almost innocence to where her portraits can reveal themselves in the midst of her process.