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Inside Ana Benaroya’s Studio, Where the Women Have No Shame

A few years ago, Ana Benaroya received what she considers the ultimate compliment. “Saw this young artist’s work recently,” the renowned painter Katherine Bradford wrote in an Instagram post about one of Benaroya’s paintings. “Now have to completely rethink nipples.” It was, Benaroya recalls when I stop by her studio in Jersey City, “the ideal validation.”

Technically, Benaroya’s paintings are female nudes. Unlike their historical counterparts, her figures are almost impossibly muscular, and colorful in both the literal and figurative sense. They project so much confidence that they’ll either give you a bounce in your step or make you blush. And on April 8, they’ll be on full display in “Swept Away,” the inaugural exhibition of Venus Over Manhattan’s new downtown outpost, which will focus on younger artists. (The Upper East Side mainstay is celebrating its 10th anniversary by expanding to 55 Great Jones Street, right next door to the stables that Andy Warhol converted into the home and studio of Jean-Michel Basquiat.)...

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