Cool, colorful, bursting with energy - that's probably how we'd describe life in New York City. It's also how we'd describe Sam Sidney's artful new exhibition - a celebration of all things NYC.
New York Never Felt So Good, a delightful showcase of finely crafted felt portraits, has taken over Eerdmans, the chic gallery space located in one of the Greenwich Village townhouses you've no doubt always wanted to explore.
Capturing the essence of everything we love about the city, Sam's impossibly creative felt renderings bring NYC icons to life like you've never seen before, from stylish personalities like Anna Wintour, Andy Warhol, and Holly Golightly-era Audrey Hepburn, to quintessential items like a MetroCard and the oh-so-precious blue and white coffee cup.
Sam's unique felt layering technique was born in quarantine, when the artist applied her love of arts and crafts to the time she was spending with her children at home. After creating a self-portrait composed of felt scraps, a new signature style emerged, and her pieces quickly took Instagram by storm.
Considering her lifelong love of the city - her fascination with it growing up on Long Island, the time she spent living in her first Manhattan apartment - it was only a matter of time before she turned her new artwork into a dedicated love letter to New York.
"My parents took me into the city all the time. We would go to the flea market in Chelsea or vintage clothing shopping in the West Village. But all I ever wanted to do was wake up in Manhattan," Sidney says. "After college I lived in the city and I just remember getting my first monthly MetroCard - and, first of all, thinking it was the most expensive thing in the world, but also feeling like, 'I'm a real New Yorker!'"
And, though she currently lives in Charleston, South Carolina, Sam has definitely remained a New York cool girl at heart. So when it came to curating her pieces for the exhibition, she of course tapped into the nostalgia of old school NYC.
"I wanted to highlight the 'real' New York, when it was a little dirty and it was a little weird," she says. "And it made me think of all the real New York characters, the fashion icons, the things you see traveling around the city."
With a wink of whimsy and plenty of charm, Sidney's new exhibition feels perfectly aligned with the joyful return of the city's spirit. It's a fun, fabulous must-see (and it'll certainly rake in the likes on IG).
Click through for a sneak peek!
New York Never Felt So Good will be on view at Eerdmans
through November 6th
[Photos courtesy Sam Sidney/Eerdmans]