Since retiring, the well-known U.S. historian of women and social policy Sonya Michel has returned to another passion: abstract art. This April, her work will be on display at the Touchstone Gallery marking her first solo exhibition, Seeing My Way. According to Michel, the title has two meanings. The first corresponds to her experience entering the art world. “I had to see my way into art. I had to figure out my own style,” she tells City Paper. “And figure out how I was going to work as an artist.” The second has to do with how her audiences experience her work, which often combines paint and everyday materials. “I like my work to show the traces of the process. It’s not this perfectly finished thing,” says Michel. She hopes people spend time with each piece, to closely examine the textures, colors, contrast, to figure out what’s going on. “I hope it’s provocative and makes them think and makes them see in different ways,” says Michel. “To look at the rest of the world in a new way. I’m seeing my way, they’re seeing their way.” April 1 to May 1 at Touchstone Gallery, 901 New York Ave. NW. Free.
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