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    Description

    SHARON KOPRIVA (American, b. 1948)
    Figure in Waiting, 1984
    Mixed media on paper
    28 x 19-3/4 inches (71.1 x 50.2 cm)
    Signed and dated lower right: Kopriva '84
    Signed and titled verso: Kopriva / "Figure In Waiting"

    PROVENANCE:
    Gerald Peters Gallery, Dallas (label verso).

    Houston artist Sharon Kopriva has gained accolades and provoked strong reactions throughout the world for her paintings and sculptures, which exhibit the influences of her Catholic background and a trip to Peru in 1981. These experiences, cultural, political, and religious, have contributed much to the development of her iconic and often humorous images of expressionistic mummy-like figures. Studying with New York painter John Alexander, as well as Texas sculptor James Surls, Kopriva is one of those rare artists who are equally comfortable producing paintings, sculpture, and prints. Her work has been shown in a solo exhibition at the Menil Collection, Houston, a major group exhibition at the Smithsonian Museum, Washington, D.C., and numerous group exhibitions in Asia, Europe, and North and South America.

    Figure in Waiting (1984) and Contemplation (1984) are ostensibly dark in subject matter, which stands in contrast to the brilliantly expressionistic use of color and line. Like many of her works, these images confront the viewer with superbly rendered images of death, but the subject is life. The cocoons that hold the skeletons resemble a human egg, or womb, and the lizards, a common symbol of male sexuality in cultures around the world, swim around them like sperm. The titles imply that these skeletons will soon be thrust back into the world once again-animated by the life forces that gather around them. An explicit representation of the life cycle, it forces the viewer to confront the utter necessity of death in order for life to be created again. As an artist, Kopriva celebrates life on the most fundamental level, in its relationship to death. Through her work, she tries to help the viewer confront their fears and understand their own mortality. In these two paintings, Kopriva has shown a willingness to address some of the most disturbing and elemental aspects of the human condition without having to sacrifice her inherent talent for making exquisite art-it is this ability that has made her such a compelling and successful artist.


    Condition Report*: Excellent condition:  miniscule scratches in maroon field of upper right quadrant; not examined outside of frame.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

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    Auction Dates
    July, 2009
    16th Thursday
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