Julie Peppito - Artist's Talk, March 12, 2pm

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Julie Peppito - Artist's Talk, March 12, 2pm
WAKE UP! (detail) 2018, 145" x 84" x 10”, Canvas, trim, thread, acrylic paint, wood, found objects, dimensional fabric paint, fabric.

About the event

Saturday, March 12, 2pm

WAKE UP! Fantastical Drawings of Julie Peppito
including Date Night Drawings with Gideon Kendall


Kentler International Drawing Space is pleased to present WAKE UP! Fantastical Drawings of Julie Peppito, a solo exhibition of mixed media drawings by Brooklyn-based artist Julie Peppito.

This dynamic installation features large and small scale works in a variety of media, including charcoal, paper, wood, fabric, beads, litter and found objects. Peppito’s richly adorned drawings are at once playful and ominous, combining surrealism and nostalgia with bold political commentary. References to water contamination, extinction, consumer waste, Dark Money and war weave in and out of decorative, whimsical compositions. Her disarming approach to activist art – described as an “act of love” – asks viewers to slow down, look carefully and realize the need to take action.

In addition to Peppito’s sensuous and colorful solo works, WAKE UP! features a selection of Date Night Drawings created in collaboration with her husband and fellow artist, Gideon Kendall. These charming black and white compositions were created in the style of surrealist parlor games and are highly fantastical in subject matter. Their intimate and spontaneous nature represents the partners’ effort to regain connection and creative synergy in the face of growing familial responsibility.

A brochure with an essay by Charlotta Kotik accompanies the exhibition.


Julie Peppito is an artist and activist who uses bold, illustrative drawing and sensual materials to lure us into stories that inspire introspection, kindness, and action. She creates arresting and emotional installations, sculptures, tapestries, and works on paper. These works are combinations of psychedelic collage, miniature quilts, botanical illustration, political critique, and Americana. 

Peppito embeds ephemera into the surfaces of her hybrid artworks like insects that are bound into elaborate decorated spiderwebs. Using obsessive stitching, fungus-like raised patterns, finely painted lines, and other repetitive motifs she merges old toys, fabric, jewelry, office supplies, bits of plastic and litter into paper, fabric, cardboard, and wood. These multi-layered masses of post consumer products disperse into fantastical and realistically rendered narratives that flow between two and three dimensions. These works are reminiscent of childhood—innocent yet profound at the same time. The blended forms are metaphors for how we connect to ourselves, each other, and the planet. Her art often references media and literature to highlight well-researched complex information and simplify it into visually compelling truths. 

The art of Kathe Kollwitz, Hieronymus Bosch, Joyce Scott, Niki De St. Phalle, Barbra Kruger, Bread and Puppet Theater, The Civil Rights Movement, and her upbringing as a Catholic girl in Oklahoma with a strong feminist mother have all influenced Peppito's art. She has never understood hierarchical boundaries between fine art, craft, illustration, and art for protest, just as she doesn't understand the divisions between people. Her work is an assertion that everyone and everything is connected. All of her art is an act of radical love. 
—Julie Peppito