Batsheva Ross           About / Contact               Works

Fitness Studies

Ongoing series of charcoal drawings and oil paintings 2019-2021.

The series is based on found images on the Internet of anaerobic exercise group classes such as yoga, Pilates and weight lifting. The pictorial caption attempts to investigate and reveal the group dynamics, human tensions and power structures between the attendees, underlining little dramas that occur in these very particular situations.

The style and the compositions for these painting/drawing consciously references classical paintings such as ‘Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp’ by Rembrandt, ‘The Doctor’ by François-Adolphe Grison, ‘The Dance Class’ by Edgar Degas and others. 

I see in these images representations of a sense of religious redemption within an irreligious activity commonly found in Western society. Such classes are bourgeoisie after-work leisure curriculum, where the teacher is perceived as an authoritarian shaman that reshapes old Eastern traditions and values to nowadays tools for the contemporary rat chase, helping the follower keep their mind and body intact, in order to maintain the ever-lasting perfection.

Related links:
Solo show at Kantine, Brussels (Link here
Interview with Perri MacKenzie following the presentation of this series as part of the group show Regenerate at Wiels, Brussels (Link here)