User Profile

Joyce Polance

About Me:

Joyce Polance currently lives and works in Chicago. Her recent paintings are figurative and executed in oil. They explore women’s transformations and empowerment. Born in New York City in 1965, Polance holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York. She also attended Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut. Polance is a two-time grantee of the Community Arts Assistance Program from the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, as well as a recipient of a Cliff Dwellers’ Artist in Residence Award, a Judith Dawn Memorial Fund Grant and a George Sugarman Foundation Grant. Her work has been featured in the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times and Chicago Reader. Additionally, she was featured as part of the Central States edition of American Art Collector, published in the fall of 2005. Her work will also be exhibited in a book to be released in 2008, What We Think: Gender Roles, Women's Issues and Feminism in the 21st Century: An Anthology and CD - published by Liquid Words Productions. Polance’s paintings are held in private and corporate collections including Commonwealth Edison, Deloitte, The University Club of Chicago, Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg LLP, and the Illinois Institute of Art. She has had solo exhibits in Chicago and the Midwest, and is represented by Gwenda Jay/ Addington Gallery in Chicago and Blue Gallery in Three Oaks, Michigan. Her paintings can be viewed at

Exhibit change by:

My current series of paintings is about women’s personal transformations and healing. I depict subjects who are in various states of emergence from patterns that have had a negative impact on their lives. My intent is to convey them breaking out of limitations and embracing awareness, strength and freedom. Both the large size of the women and the thick, layered application of paint are meant to create an arresting visual presence echoing the internal strength of the figures. I paint the women naked to suggest their willingness to change and be vulnerable, while simultaneously embracing their sexuality and bodies. The women take ownership of both their femininity and their power. My objective is to challenge the viewers to question their own assumptions about strength and beauty.

I'm passionate about:

Politically, I am passionate about ending the war in Iraq, women's rights, gay rights and the environment. Personally, I want to see a society in which feelings, vulnerability and individual differences are considered strengths - where decisions aren't made out of fear but out of cooperation, trust and mutual support.