When artist Renée Schuls-Jacobson decided to taper off her anti-anxiety medication — a commonly prescribed benzo — she experienced terrifying withdrawal symptoms that impacted her physically, psychologically, and socially. Determined to find a way to push through this new hell, she began painting simple, colorful hearts and words as a way to distract herself. She now goes by RASJACOBSON, and her self-prescribed art therapy practice has evolved into mostly female figures expressing a variety of emotions. The works are based on images shared by others who experience the disconnect she felt between outer appearance and inner turmoil. Each of the colorful, whimsical canvases center on a figure in various stages of undress, with a variety of complex expressions.
"The State of Undress: The Healing of RASJACOBSON" is on view at Whitman Works Company Gallery (1826 Penfield Road, Penfield) through October 7. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Admission is free. 747-9999; whitmanworks.com.