Art Basel Miami Beach 2018

Family Affair: At Lulu’s NADA Miami Booth, Mother and Son Collaborate

Paintings by Shana Sharp at Lulu gallery’s booth at NADA Miami.


There’s no shortage of examples of parents and children working together in the gallery business these days—Arne and Marc Glimcher, David and Lucas Zwirner, and Paula and Lucas Cooper all come to mind—but what’s going on at the NADA Miami booth of Mexico City gallery Lulu is something a bit different. The paintings on view are by Shana Sharp, who is the mother of the gallery’s multitasking proprietor, curator Chris Sharp.

The elder Sharp has painted scenes from around Sonoma County, California, where she lives. They’re lush and, at times, tender. A vase filled with white lilies, seen from a low angle, has some of the meaty intensity of a Marsden Harley, while swaying trees in one landscape and a closeup view of a cactus recall the otherworldly spirit of Charles Burchfield—nature revealed as something unknowable, alluring, and strange.

The NADA presentation, on view through Sunday, is one half of a Sharp-Sharp doubleheader, with Shana also showing works at Lulu’s home base in Mexican City in a solo show that runs through January 26, 2019. There, she’s made canvases depicting views of the gallery that her son runs—trees palm tress growing along its exterior, a narrow outdoor corridor with a bike resting against a wall. From photographs, they look beautiful—confident and fill of light.

The younger Sharp said that his mother stopped painting when he and his sister were born, some 40 years ago. Now she’s back at it. Thank goodness.

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