Patrick Smith: The Intimacy of Others

Institute 193

Friday, November 20th
4:00pm - 11:00pm
Saturday, January 16th
4:00pm - 11:00pm
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Patrick Smith

The Intimacy of Others

November 18, 2020 - January 16, 2021

Institute 193, Lexington


A man reclines on his back, right arm cast behind his head with a look of relaxation, or possibly exhaustion, on his face. Eyes closed, he is nude from the waist up, seemingly unaware he is being watched from the other side of the frame. Another woman stares directly at the viewer as if looking at her reflection in a mirror, sliding her undergarments over her hip, possibly considering what she sees in tandem with some inner dialogue. Patrick Smith’s paintings appear to capture glimpses of personal, private moments meant to be seen by a single person, or no one at all.


The most basic definition of intimacy is the closeness between people in a personal relationship; an experience that emits a feeling of humanity at its most primitive level. Working strictly from his own photographs of people with whom he has a close relationship, Smith delicately renders portraits that are intimate in both size and subject matter, often no larger than a standard sheet of paper. Their scale requires the observer to view the works from a short distance, thereby witnessing intimate moments not meant to be seen from an outsider’s perspective. Photographic in nature, Smith’s paintings employ minute details to transform the works from brushstrokes on paper to visceral encounters between subject and viewer.


Patrick Smith lives and works in Lexington, Kentucky. Before receiving his bachelor’s degree from Transylvania University in 2008, a friend encouraged him to take a painting class, kindling his passion to pursue a life in the arts. While at Transylvania University, Smith attended the Marchutz School of Fine Arts in Aix-en-Provence, France, where he honed his skills as a representational painter by reproducing black and white etchings of renowned Dutch painter Rembrandt van Rijn.


Patrick Smith: The Intimacy of Others is presented in collaboration with the University of Kentucky Art Museum. A separate exhibition tilted Face Off: Patrick Smith with Victor Hammer will run concurrently at their location from November 10, 2020 – April 3, 2021.