BIO: Haley Gewandter is a Manhattan born, bred, and based painter and installation artist. She recently graduated from Bowdoin College, where she majored in visual arts and founded Bowdoin Artist Activists, a group dedicated to creating public art that raises awareness about social/political issues. She spent her junior spring at Studio Art Centers International in Florence, Italy. She has exhibited in Maine, New York City, and Florence, and recently completed a mural commissioned by the Fairfield, Connecticut Public Library. ARTIST'S STATEMENT: I love observing humans. Not only their physical beings, but also how they think. What makes them tick. How they know—and if they don’t innately know, then how they learn—how to function in our society. Why does someone post on Facebook or Instagram when s/he is reunited with an old friend? How did “selfies” become normal? What motivates people to post Facebook statuses regularly updating others on their whereabouts, thoughts, feelings, or opinions? Why is balancing on a café chair to snap the perfect pic while breakfast gets cold trendy? I believe there is great power in the harmonization of the past and the present. How can I use traditional oil techniques to speak to current issues, like our society’s obsession with social media? Can I find a way, using the same oils and minerals as Van Eyck, to force people to stop and reflect on their overwhelming dependence on the Internet? These are the challenges that inspire me. To spend 30 hours painting an image that someone captured, filtered, and posted to Instagram in under 5 minutes. My painting process enables me to grapple with my observations about our society. The pieces themselves are my way of sharing my observations with the world.