Razel Kapustin, Locusts (Eighth Plague)
A noted figure in the Philadelphia art world, Kapustin exhibited frequently, lectured on modern art, and provided the New York Times with illustrations. Committed to the politics of the left, she believed that art should have a clear social or political message.
The Eighth Plague: Locusts references one of the ten plagues of the Old Testament wrought by God to soften the heart of the Egyptian Pharaoh and convince him to free the Jews from slavery. Layers of calligraphic lines, slashing marks, and splotches of paint seem to build from the depths of the canvas. Filled with energetic agitation, the composition's linear elements feel like blood vessels or electrical synapses connecting the many parts of the painting. Kapustin told her niece Louise Fishman that the Plague paintings represented various types of people in the art world.