Gina Beavers

The ways we consume – and become consumed by – the internet.

Gina Beavers (she/her) was born in 1974 in Athens, Greece. She now lives and works in Newark, New Jersey.

Exhibitions

The title of Beaver’s exhibition “World War Me" references a Sex and the City meme. It read: “And as our country entered World War III, I couldn’t help but wonder… is it time to focus on World War Me?” Beavers says, “we’re confronted with massive global upheavals, right next to a picture of your friend’s dog.”

Process

Beaver’s distinctive style takes a toll. “I wear a mask and, for the large ones, I have to actually sit or lie on the piece. My doctor thinks I have carpal tunnel from making them. So they’re definitely physically demanding!”

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Collaborations with this artist

Practice overview

Gina Beavers translates social media posts into hefty, impasto paintings. Her work directly appropriates internet culture. Memes, makeup tutorials, selfies and ‘food porn’ are all selected as subjects. The artist chooses references she thinks convey a sense of idealism or beauty. She turns these images into paintings through a laborious process. First she shapes foam and acrylic medium into sculptural mounds with palette knives. Then she adds colour with acrylic paint. Final works have a careful attention to colour and detail. They embody a grotesque sense of realism. Beaver's inspirations include mid-20th century sculptors Claes Oldenberg and Lee Bontecou.

While the screens we use every day are flat, Beaver’s work protrudes garishly into 3D. In effect, she directly interjects online content into the ‘real world.’ Her work points out that our ‘online’ and ‘offline’ personas aren’t as separate as they may seem. As she puts it: “what’s behind our screen is a whole living, breathing world – one that gives as much as it takes.” Across her practice, Beavers carefully documents online culture. She explores the ways we consume – and become consumed by – the internet.

“Something pretty mundane from our online lives can also be serious art.” Gina Beavers