April 2 — May 7, 2016


Jennie Ottinger



Conduit Gallery is honored to announce the third solo exhibition of work by Jennie Ottinger at Conduit Gallery: Spoilers.

Since 2011, San Francisco based artist Jennie Ottinger has delved into the world of classic literature with her series Read the Classics. The paintings and faux-book covers offered the viewer obscenely condensed summaries from classic books: the bare bones of the plot and the ending. Ottinger’s biting wit and brilliant observations permeated her written text and her economic brushwork and soft palette heightened the visual playfulness of the imagery.

As indicated, Ottinger’s most recent body of work in Spoilers narrows further to focus solely on the dénouement of western canonical novels and reveals the heavy thread of misogyny and classism running through these classics. A series of paintings and oil on paper cut outs pinned onto the wall play out the actions of the characters, as Ottinger notes, typically either a wedding, tragic death and more open endings in certain modern novels.

Ottinger exposits, “Further, there seemed to be many [novels] that concluded with the death of the female protagonist (often at her own hands) when she had cheated on her partner (or was suspected of cheating as in The House of Mirth where Lily Bart also committed the crime of being selective in choosing a husband.) Another very obvious pattern was that these novels are all by and about white people. Because racism. So it is not until more recently that African American authors began widely distributing fiction. Because these novels were written in the modern era, the endings were more nuanced and vague.”

Some of the novels Ottinger includes in Spoilers are: Pride and Prejudice (1813); Jane Eyre (1847); Madame Bovary (1856); Their Eyes Were Watching God (1937); Black Boy (1945); Lolita (1955); One Hundred Years of Solitude (1967); and The Bluest Eye (1970).

Jennie Ottinger earned a B.A. in Art History from the University of the Pacific, and an M.F.A. from Mills College in May of 2008. Exhibitions since 2009 include: the Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco, CA (2015); Dominican University, San Raphael, CA (2015); The Reading Room, Dallas (2014); Eleven Gallery, London (2011); the Volta Art Fair, New York, with Johansson Projects (2010 & 2011); Kantor Gallery, Los Angeles, CA (2010); Adam Baumgold Gallery, New York, NY (2011) and the NADA Art Fair, Miami, FL, with Johansson Projects (2009.)

Artists in this Exhibition