Askance - ART FIX

Sara Berman

Askance, 2022

Archival pigment print

70 x 70cm

Edition 25 + 5 AP
Signed and numbered on the front

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About the artwork

“Askance” shows one of Sara Berman’s infamous female characters, her arms sternly placed in a posture of defiance. Her gaze is to the right of the viewer – what draws her gaze is a mystery. In her darkly-eyelined eyes we see suspicion and perhaps some mistrust. Her black nails and sharp dark bob are in contrast with her soft checkered blouse. The work begins with the motif of a harlequin. When rendered in male form, this character is a lovable joker, dressed in a diamond-patterned costume. However, the same character as a woman becomes a “trickster whore.” Berman aims to dismantle this double standard. “These paintings are very much about claiming presence as a person, as a woman. There’s a slight arrogance to them which I like because taking space is an act of necessary selfishness.” At the same time, the soft colour palette and playful approach to composition conveys a sense of joy.

Check out our Art Fix interview with Sara Berman where you can learn more about this work, its title and why she’s committed to portraying females in strong daring poses.

About Sara Berman

London-based artist Sara Berman is a force to reckon with. A few years ago, Berman closed down her successful fashion brand of 15 years and went back to school to study fine art. Now she’s the star of a sold out booth at Untitled Art Miami 2021!

When Berman swapped her burgeoning fashion career to go back to school and become a painter, she found inspiration in the works of Alice Neel and Helen Frankenthaler. Her works feature soft colours with bruised backgrounds, her figures often in acrobatic movements or unexpected poses. It makes us wonder: what inspires Sara? “I actually find my own practice like a dance… I paint and draw and weave and sew and knit and pivot from one to the other”. Berman can be found in her Kilburn studio jamming to Radiohead, Massive Attack, or Nina Simone.


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