b. Sagamihara, Japan 1956
Renée Rey is an award-winning painter living in New York City and southwest Florida.
Her other-worldly spaces flirt with romantic ideals of historical legend and utopian future. As she explores the connection between people all around the world and everything in nature, she draws upon the current social and political climate of cultural diversity, biodiversity and equality. Just as fluidly, Rey borrows imagery from science, language, religion and wisdom literature suggesting complex and symbolic narrative threads. Washes of vivid color and gestural mark making create a sense of weightlessness and defiance of gravity.
Rey was born in Japan into a dual diaspora heritage: Jewish/American optometrist father, and French/Armenian/Christian fashion designer mother, and refugee grandparents. Rey came of age in the environmental and civil rights zeitgeist of the 1960's and 70’s in upstate New York. An interior architectural design career informs color, material, and spatial choices. Mesmerized by Lucien Freud’s tactile juicy oil paintings of larger than life nudes, Rey embraces his uncensored fragility, enigmatic rawness, and freedom to push paint in a new direction.
Art curators and gallery professionals nationally have taken notice. In March 2017, she was awarded Best in Show in Art Encounters National Competition 2017, a national juried exhibit, Frederick O. Watson Gallery, von Liebig Art Center, Naples, FL, by Jurors Jade Dellinger, Director, Bob Rauschenberg Gallery, Fort Myers, FL, Alejo Benedetti, Curatorial Assistant, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, AR, and Mallory O’Connor, Professor of Art History, Emerita, Santa Fe College, Gainesville, FL. Her paintings have been selected for exhibit at the Farmington Museum, New Mexico by Dr. Julie Sasse, Chief Curator, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, and Curator of Latin American Art at the Tucson Museum of Art, Tucson, AZ for a national juried exhibit and Florida Contemporary 2015 Exhibition, Baker Museum, Artis-Naples, Naples, FL, and by Gisela Carbonell, Director of Curatorial Affairs and Curator of Special Collections, at the Artis-Naples, Baker Museum, Naples, FL. Rey's paintings have been in exhibitions curated by Erin Wright, Curator at Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, CA, Zoe Larkins, Associate Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver, CO, and Susan Welsh, Executive Director, Macon Museum of Arts and Sciences, Macon, GA.