Josh Brinlee Exhibition at Playhouse on the Square

Contact: Carrie Corbett
Director of College Communications
ccorbett@mca.edu
901-272-5111

June 10, 2014

Josh Brinlee, The Queen

Josh Brinlee Exhibition At Playhouse on the Square

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Memphis College of Art announces the opening of Transformations by Josh Brinlee on June 13 at Playhouse on the Square, 66 S. Cooper St. The exhibition will continue on view through July 20.

Brinlee received his MFA in Studio Arts from Memphis College of Art in 2012 and currently teaches studio foundation courses at both MCA and the University of Mississippi, where he was recently named to an Assistant Professor Foundations Coordinator position for the Fall 2014 semester. Brinlee currently resides in Memphis and continues to work with digital manipulation and appropriation in his work, examining the ideas of originality, authorship, identity, self and ownership within the digital age.

“This idea of originality and authorship is not a new concept,” says Brinlee. “It is the basis for most appropriation artworks and we see this in the work of artists such as Marcel Duchamp, Barbara Kruger, Sherrie Levine and Richard Prince. This concept is at the core of copyright laws and the artists who challenge them. Through digital manipulation, the images fall into fair use; according to copyright law, they have been “transformed.”

Brinlee says that the works in Transformations appropriate and reimagine historical feminine portraiture, breaking their attachments to provenance and representing themselves anew. The images are constructed from scanned segments of female portraits and allegorical painting from art history. They are layered and manipulated—only traces of the original scan can be seen.

“Female portraiture has been appropriated to show the archetypes used to define women, such as the visionary, the scribe, the mother, the femme fatale and the maiden,” says Brinlee. “The final prints subvert the context of the original portrait. The sitter of the portrait is no longer tied to their authorship, originality or ownership.”

Playhouse’s MCA Gallery is open Monday to Saturday from 9 a.m.–5 p.m., Sunday from 1–5 p.m. and on show nights.

Photo: Josh Brinlee, The Queen, 2014, digital collage, 16 x 20 inches


Memphis College of Art provides a rigorous curriculum in an intimate, diverse community to empower generations of leading artists, designers and educators to flourish professionally and contribute valuable ideas to society. The region’s only independent art and design college, MCA is fully accredited with expert, nationally renowned faculty and grants BFA, MFA, MA in Art Education and MA in Teaching degrees with graduates excelling in various careers across the country and internationally. For more information, visit mca.edu. Follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/memphiscollegeofart and on Twitter at @memphisart.

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