Open Secrets is a retrospective of ten years of work by Rachel Lee Hovnanian that engages with ubiquitous yet nuanced notions of narcissism, obsession and intimacy and society’s alienating addiction to modern technology. Navigating the post-internet world through surreal environments that challenge viewers to examine and reevaluate their own cultural values and relationships with digital technology, the artist explores the complexities of modern feminism, ideals of perfection, and the often-detrimental effects of the media on our psyches. Using photography, video, sculpture, painting, and installations that draw on her own upbringing as a woman in the American South, Hovnanian delves into embedded societal mores that reveal the dichotomy between our intrinsic value systems and our public selves.
About Rachel Lee Hovnanian
Born in West Virginia and raised in Houston, Texas, Rachel Lee Hovnanian is a New York-based contemporary artist whose multidisciplinary practice explores society’s alienating addiction to media & technological innovations, merging photography, video, sculpture, painting and installation art. Described by Judith Stein as “a wizard at fingering uncomfortable truths,” “Hovnanian is one of the more interesting feminist artists working in the contemporary art-world,” said Shiva Balagali, “delving into the important theme of beauty.”
Hovnanian received her BFA from the University of Texas, Austin, and has since exhibited internationally in both solo and group exhibitions in the United States, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. With her 2018 The Women's Trilogy Project, Hovnanian became the first female artist to be given three consecutive gallery exhibitions in New York. Other recent solo exhibitions have been held at Pechersky Gallery, Moscow; Joyce Gallery, Beijing; and Foundation Pons, Barcelona.
In addition, Hovnanian has been shown in group exhibitions including at the University of Connecticut, Connecticut; Parasol Unit, London; Des Moines Art Center, Des Moines; Manarat al Saadivat, Abu Dhabi; and Loretta Howard Gallery, New York in an exhibition curated by Beth Rudin DeWoody.
Hovnanian’s artwork has been featured in numerous publications such as The New York Times, WWD, Flaunt, Cultured, The Wall Street Journal Europe, Vogue, Interview, Tatler, ARTnews, Modern Painters, Hyperallergic and BOMB. Her work is in the collection of the Royal Family of Dubai, Lily Safra and the Mallin Collection, as well as in the corporate collections of AT&T, Dior, Graff Diamonds and TD Bank, MAMM (Moscow’s Multimedia Art Museum) and the 21c Museum Hotel. Her artworks were also part of the Art in Embassies Program.
About Palazzo Mediceo
Located in the historical town of Seravezza in northern Tuscany, Palazzo Mediceo was commissioned in the 16th century by Cosimo de Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, as a temporary residence during his visits to the marble quarries and silver mines as well as a military outpost. In 1982, it transitioned into an exhibition space for modern and contemporary art. In 2013, UNESCO designated the Palazzo and the Medici Garden a World Heritage Site.
About Henraux Foundation
Established in 2011, the Henraux Foundation supports both public and private cultural projects that promote the tradition and processing of marble in all areas of visual arts, rekindling an early commitment made in the Fifties and Sixties to bring to life an international sculpture center through early collaborations with sculptors such as Henry Moore, Jean Arp, Henri Georges Adam and Noguchi. This mission was conceived by the Italian marble working experts who founded Henraux in 1821.
The Foundation’s initiatives are aimed at innovation alongside artistic and technological experimentation, as well as the conservation and enhancement of the historical and productive heritage of marble. In 2018 Edoardo Bonaspetti joined as artistic director