Hera Gallery Presents:

Inhabited Spaces

August 5 – September 2

Opening Reception: Saturday, August 5th, 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Artist Talk: Thursday, August 17th at 7 p.m.


 Hera Gallery is pleased to announce Inhabited Spaces, an exhibition featuring the work of Hera Members Viera Levitt, Susie Matthews, Jill McLaughlin, and Barbara Owen. We invite the public to join us Saturday, August 5th from 6:00 to 8:00pm for the opening reception and to the artist panel discussion on Thursday August 17th, at 7pm.


Hera Gallery is the 5th oldest women founded project art space in the United States. Our non-profit, artist-run organization has continued to stimulate discussion and challenge perceptions for over 40 years. This creative space has allowed countless artists a place for transformation, exploration, and community with one another.


These four female artists present a show that speaks of our unique relationships with the world around us, both meaningful but transient, through the use of materiality and spatial relationships. Space surrounds us, and can be inhabited for any reason, to reside, to find safety and comfort, to wander, to create... Our artists ask you to consider yours, and your purpose within them.

Viera Levitt is a curator and photographer. She settled in Rhode Island in 2006 following her Artslink Residency at RISD's Graduate Studies and an internship in the Photography Department at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. After 3 years as the Director of the CCRI Knight Campus Art Gallery, she has, since September 2012, worked as the Gallery Director for the University of Massachusetts in Dartmouth. Her show at CCRI about its brutalist megastructure “We Talk About Architecture, Architecture Talks Back” won the 2011 New England Art Award in the Concept/theme show curator category. With her photographic exploration of Brutalism, Viera continues to reveal the hidden beauty of this architectural style often derided as gray, crude, soulless and austere.


Susie Matthews is a mixed media artist, currently working primarily with ceramic and textile mediums.  She first moved to Rhode Island in order to attend college and received a BA in studio art from Brown University in 1995. She received her MFA in ceramics from RISD in 2004. While focusing her energies on being a domestic goddess for the last decade, she also served for three years on the board of the Jamestown Arts Center and chaired the exhibition committee there.


Jill McLaughlin is a mixed media artist currently focusing on collage and assemblage using vintage items and paper.  She moved to New England in 1981 after studying art and photography at Delta Community College and Western Michigan University.   McLaughlin has been active in exhibiting at many local art galleries and organizations, including Newport Art Museum, Mystic Museum of Art, South County Art Assn. and Gallery X.  Her current work is inspired by strong, creative women in her life.  She is exploring the cocoon shape as a symbol of the protective layers that we surround ourselves with and the potential for beauty that is contained inside.


Barbara Owen is a contemporary painter and mixed media artist.  Her work has been featured in numerous curated and juried exhibitions including the Newport Art Museum, RI, The Arts Center in Troy, NY, Yellow Peril Gallery, Providence, RI, and Jamestown Arts Center among others.  Her paintings have been featured in the arts magazine “Collect” and is included in the 2010 publication of Studio Visit, Volume 9; International Edition. 


 In 2016 two paintings were included in exhibitions with the Arts in Embassies (AIE) program.  One is in the permanent collection at the American Embassy in Papua New Guinea, and another is on exhibit in Paramaribo, Suriname. 


Owen has participated in artist residency programs nationwide, including the MASS MoCA/Assets for Artists in 2015. She was also a featured artist in the NetWorks RI 2015 Artist Video Portraits series.