Growing up in Somerville New Jersey, Ria Glassmen became interested in the human form after taking a life drawing class at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York. Glassman studied studio art at Drew University where she connected with oil painting. The solo and group shows that she has participated in have been centered in New Jersey.
Glassman work requires a balance of constriction and freedom in order to execute her subjects. She is interested in the technical aspect of paint, playing with light and shadows by applying translucent and opaque layers of color. The subject of Glassman’s work is one of the oldest images used among artists, the female nude. The choice to focus on the female nude stems from a social responsibility, given that the majority are primarily done by men. Glassman aims to recreate the portrayal of female nudity, to deviate from a overtly submissive and sexualized form and incorporate depth into her subjects. Although she focuses on the body of women, as opposed to their faces, Glassman arranges them in poses that are indicative of a range of emotions rather than limit them to intimate positions. By portraying the women in various poses Glassman aims to relate to the emotional capacity of human beings. The poses act as a form of communication that is relatable across culture, language, and age.