Familiar Strangers & Stuckism Press Release

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Artist wants more people to be stuck

Jacksonville artist, Virginia Andow, is one of the newest members of the Stuckists international art movement, who believe painting is real art and Damien Hirst’s shark is definitely not worth $14 million.

Andow said, “I was completely disenchanted with the art world and all the rubbish that goes on in it.  Stuckism is the one voice in defence of the true nature of a painter that resonates with me.”

Andow has started a local chapter of the movement, and is inviting other like-minded artists to join her.  She is staging an exhibition, Familiar Strangers and Stuckism, this month.  All are invited to visit and find out more about Stuckism.

Charles Thomson, the founder of the Stuckist movement in London, said, “Virginia has a strong natural talent, which too often gets overlooked in favour of the latest empty art gimmick.  She is a real artist, and I’m glad she’s found support with us for her work.  A lot of people in the art world were scornful when we said painting was the future of art, and now a lot of them are talking about painting. Even Damien Hirst is doing it.”

Andow’s work is mostly portraits and still lifes, done with oil or charcoal.  She describes it as “an autopsy of me as an artist by depicting people who have influenced me, but whom I have never met.  I think of them as “bastardized icons”, hence the title of my show Familiar Strangers.”

Andow was born and bred in NYC and a citizen of both the U.S. and U.K., but at the moment resides in Jacksonville while finishing her BFA at the Savannah College of Art and Design. She hopes to then move to the U.K. where she will complete her MFA.

The Stuckists art movement was founded by Charles Thomson with Billy Childish, whose ex partner, Brit artist, Tracey Emin, told him he was “stuck” for doing painting. Emin achieved fame after exhibiting her dishevelled double bed in the Tate gallery for the Turner Prize in 1999.  The first group of 13 artists has now grown to 200 groups in 48 countries.  The Stuckists have gained worldwide media coverage for their protests against the Turner Prize (initially dressed as clowns) which they have done annually since 2000.  Childish left the group in 2001.

Media info

Virginia Andow is available for interview

“Familiar Strangers and Stuckism” runs, 17 October – 19 November 2009 at

Three Layers, 1602 Walnut Street, Historic Springfield, Jacksonville FL 32206 for more info: 904.355.9791

The press launch and opening night is Saturday, 17 October 2009 at 6pm – 11pm

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