Unmasked: Portraits from the Zoom Room

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Unmasked: Portraits from the Zoom Room

May 6 - June 26


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Opening Reception, Friday, May 13, 2022
Nilson Gallery, Monmouth Museum, Lincroft, NJ

In March 2020, the world changed; so did the work of artist Nanci Hersh. The pandemic threw us all into a surreal yet voyeuristic world, presenting a unique opportunity for everyone to be their “unmasked” selves —for better or worse. The elevation of Zoom technology changed how we interacted and gave us a new perspective — bizarrely intimate, both authentic and contrived at the same time.

Fascinated by this opportunity to observe and capture a microcosm of human experiences within the pandemic, Hersh has developed her latest series working from screenshots taken via Zoom conferences since March 2020. With every screenshot captured, she found a different story, a new perspective, and a recognizable silver lining — illuminating the humor, boredom, pathos, and beauty that has kept us all connected.

I think her capacity to capture elements about us very accurately is really quite astounding, they’re wonderfully expressionistic images, the mark-making is brilliant, the color palette’s great, and just the genuine sheer fun, and I think appreciation for who she’s with — the celebration that happens — even though we’re apart, she’s now bringing us together… I think it also just transcends… even if you don’t know the people, you recognize the gestures you might have made or you’ve seen and the things that are fleeting are now frozen in this moment.”, – Greg Shelnutt, Professor and Chair of the Department of Art & Design, University of Delaware (and subject of Blues Brothers Revisited)

Many, if not most, of the subjects are artists, educators, and “everyday” people that she shared space with in her recent role as Executive Director of Delaware Institute for the Arts in Education. Hersh has taken the challenges of the past 24+ months and transformed those seemingly endless Zoom meetings into works of art. All her paintings are acrylic on synthetic non-woven paper, mounted on cradled birch panels and framed in museum black floater framers, 15.5”x25.5”. To date, there are 28 “Zoom Room portraits” in total.

Learn more and schedule your visit here.


May 6
June 26
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Monmouth Museum


Monmouth Museum
765 Newman Springs Rd.
Lincroft, NJ United States
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