Monica Shulman is a contemporary artist whose brand of gestural abstraction is a form of story-telling and draws attention to the singularity of her mark-making. A first-generation American of Cuban and Argentinian descent who left her career as an attorney to focus on her art practice full-time, Monica Shulman lives and works in the lower Hudson Valley with her husband and their two young children. She has been featured in various publications including Popular Photography, Westchester Magazine, and The Huffington Post. In 2019, the Director of PULSE Art Fair in Miami invited Monica to participate in the “Next Generation” exhibit to celebrate the fair’s 15th anniversary. Her work has been shown at the American Academy of Arts and Letters in New York City, Photo LA, Art Market Hamptons, PULSE Art Fair, and the New York Mercantile Exchange, among others.
“My practice denotes freedom and unapologetic honesty. My work often explores my family’s cultural background and my experiences as a first-generation American as well as my shift in careers from corporate lawyer to full-time working artist and mother. Using gestural abstraction as story-telling, my work explores subjective personal themes of duality such as growth, love, rejection, family, isolation, chaos, calm, flawed beauty, and perfection. Abstraction feels liberating and there’s no fixed narrative so the story can change at any moment and that’s okay. I work to provoke a vivid, emotional response, but also leave an impression of uncertainty.
I use heavy sculptural layering to explore the dynamic tension between the unintentional stroke and the meticulously planned one. I’m inspired by the process of building and removing layers in order to reveal what is really underneath - whether what is hidden away in the bottom layers shows our true selves below masks we wear in order to live and protect ourselves in the world or our emotions that are so complicated and fluid that we only get to the truth once all the complexity and layers are removed. I believe all human experiences and emotions are important and valuable - often filled with joy but sometimes encumbered with unpredictable and terrible pain. I aim to make art that is relatable to viewers in a contemplative and personal way, as I create work that is profound, penetrating, and evocative, very much corresponding to ourselves and how we live.”