Month-by-month between 2018 and 2019, Akron artist Max Markwald documented the dissociative process of gender transition through self-portraits.
Summit Artspace on East Market is featuring, “Dissociation,” an exhibit of 12 large format paintings by Markwald, in the Transition Gallery through Saturday, Sept. 7. The exhibit is free and open to the public.
Markwald painted himself once a month for a year as a way of documenting his gender transition from female to male. The result was “Dissociation.” The year-long exploration slowly came about as the artist transitioned to male, a process that had been evolving since he was a teen.
“I began the series in September of 2018 when I legally changed my name to Max Markwald. Instead of showing a fluid progression, each painting became an obscured portrait–hiding in full view,” Markwald said.
The artist graduated from the University of Akron, Myers School of Art, with a bachelor’s degree in Painting and Drawing in Fall of 2016. He has participated in the Curated Storefront Project, which places artwork in unused storefronts throughout downtown Akron.
His large-scale realistic portraits, which explore iconic figures and gender, have also been exhibited at 22 High Street Gallery, Malone Art Gallery and the Hive Mind. Currently his studio is located at Summit Artspace. In April of 2018, he was featured in Canvas Magazine in the article, “Who’s Next. Emerging Artists in Northeast Ohio.”
Area art lovers may also remember Markwald’s “Rosie the Riveter” series where he painted friends, male and female, as the iconic symbol of the female worker.
“I was drawn to her as a symbol of power for normal everyday working women. Painting my friends as Rosie became a way to explore and subvert gender roles,” Markwald added.
Summit Artspace is located at 140 E. Market St. Gallery hours are Thursdays and Fridays, noon to 7 p.m., and Saturdays, noon to 5 p.m. Additional hours include Saturday, Sept. 7 for the monrhtly Artwalk, 5 to 9 p.m.
For info, visit www.summitartspace.org.