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Hyperrealistic Underwater Paintings that Make you Rub your Eyes
For hyperrealistic underwater paintings, Reisha Perlmutter is the artist to watch. Her latest series...
Fempire 25 Jul 2017

Hyperrealistic Underwater Paintings that Make you Rub your Eyes
Painter, New York

For hyperrealistic underwater paintings, Reisha Perlmutter is the artist to watch. Her latest series of oil paintings explore the female body – dipped in light an water, diving and floating naked with eyes closed expressing peace and balance. Featured from W Magazine to Creators, also Sotheby’s picked a work of her for their annual Take Home a Nude benefit.
She aims to place emphasis on the biological connection between body and water, and portrays the beauty of various shapes, sizes, skin colors empowering female beauty. Some girls are tattooed, others are pregnant, all are real people. If you are brave (and lucky) you might even be one of her next models as she often does castings for upcoming series.
With 154K instagram followers, she made quite a wave on social media and her audience is eagerly awaiting glimpses in her latest work:

02Reisha Perlmutter
For just over a year, Perlmutter has been working on a series of oil paintings depicting women in water, in many of these she is also the subject. She aims to place emphasis on the biological connection between body and water, while finding correlations between her painting philosophy and understanding of color. Color and light move across the skin through the water, in energetic brushwork, blurring the edges between the figure and it’s surrounding environment. Through this connection, we sense that the body and the water are one.
Perlmutter’s imagery allows the viewer to relive and experience this universal and very humanizing connection to water, where one becomes hyper-aware of the body, where it begins and ends, how it moves in nature. Her weightless figures seem to be at complete ease and calm, the dappled light melting into the larger image, inviting our senses to participate in the painting.
Perlmutter draws parallels between the physical relationship with nature and Albers color theory, where color exists purely in its relationship to its surroundings. She explains this relationship as almost linear, “the flesh ends and the water begins, the flesh feels and looks like flesh because of the water,” just as one color will project that which it is relative to.
She also aims to depict bodies that are not overly posed or sexualized. Her work often evokes comparisons to photorealism, however the artist associates photography as data and documentation, which is not part of her objective in practice.
Emphasis is directed away from individualized anatomy, and onto the body as a whole. The artist finds poetry within the recurring shapes, naturally occurring throughout individual bodies. Capturing natural patterns, she considers DNA, physiology and biology; and particularly in relationship to women and their bodies. Her recent work aims to empower women to appreciate their differences, find a comfortability with their sizes, shapes, and colors.
About the Artist:
Born in Naples, Fl in 1990, Perlmutter is an especially talented young painter. She shows a faculty with the medium that belies her age. She has studied painting at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL (BFA) and The New York Academy of Art, New York, NY (MFA). She has attended residencies in Montecastello di Vibio, Italy, Studio Escalier in Paris, and Argenton Chateau in France.
Perlmutter has paintings in numerous private collections in Europe and the US. Her work has been exhibited in galleries in Munich, Miami, Naples, New York and East Hampton. In 2016, she was included in Water Bodies, an exhibition at The Southampton Arts Center curated by Eric Fischl and David Kratz. She has also exhibited in Sotheby’s annual Take Home a Nude benefit, Scope New York and the New York Academy of Art. Perlmutter’s work has appeared in numerous print and online publications including VICE: Creators Project, W Magazine, Wide Walls, Hamptons Art Hub, Town and Country and Artnet.

In the art world currently I find most exciting that…

There seems to be a resurgence of appreciation towards figuration, I think especially because of its ability to translate well on social media. Social media is also changing the way artists get their work and shows out there to the public and a much more comprehensive way.
It also allows for people who would not necessarily be able to see my work in person, participate remotely. For example, I get to be the first to tell my followers about my upcoming solo show at Roman Fine Art in the Hamptons in a direct way that seems so intimate and personal.

Number of unanswered mails in your account…
9,428 emails sitting in my inbox.

My perfect working outfit…
A cotton jumpsuit from Free People! I think 95% of my working wardrobe is from that brand. I feel like their clothes and vibe works really well for my working aesthetic.

My favourite new brand discovery…

Fera Moringa. It’s a green superfood that is sort of like matcha, but way more potent in terms of its vitamin content. I put in in tea or in my smoothies, and I feel so energized and clear minded, which really helps me work.

My everyday online art read is…
I love scrolling through Artnews, I like to see the spectrum of opinions and stories. And The Art Gorgeous of course!

My necessary extravagance is…
Cadmium and cobalt pigments, and good wine.
Most ridiculous thing I’ve ever bought…
A $250 paintbrush that I proceeded to ruin right after.

My ultimate secret after long working hours…

Shower, and go for a walk to the east river.
My favourite collaboration of the art- and fashion world…
I just walked by Louis Vuitton in NYC the other day and saw MASTERS, the collaboration with Jeff Koons, which I really liked.

My favourite hashtag…

I love the #freethenipple hashtag. I think it’s fascinating seeing how different men and women relate to this idea that the nipple should be embraced, relating to the idea of body as a whole.

On my office table I always have…
A chaotic splay of paints, mediums, brushes, references and little notes to myself.

The most arty city is…
NYC. I feel like it’s so diverse, and bubbling with inspiration in all different types. I love being able to walk the the MOMA or Met, and connect with the biggest artists of history, and then go to Chelsea to see the contemporary big names, and then onto the Lower East Side Galleries for a bit more of an approachable feeling towards art, and then of course my neighborhood of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, where you walk down the street and see art everywhere. I feel like that neighborhood breathes art, and defines itself in many ways but the amazing murals you see walking down the street.
01Reisha Perlmutter

Who are the best dressed in the art world…
I’m not really the type to keep track of the fashionista’s of the art world, I loved seeing the amazing creations from Rei Kawakubu at the Met Gala, and anything that Rihanna wears really.
Art world gent I would love to have lunch with…
Can I go back in time and have drinks with Picasso?

Artist(s) we should have on our watch list is/are…
There are so many great artists that are surfacing through Instagram which I love. It becomes accessible for everyone to see new, diverse talent. One of my favorite artists to follow is Tom Kemp @tom_kemp_

Photos by Reisha Perlmutter
Instagram: ReishaPerlmutter

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