Living Things Gallery
In 2007 I began to replicate my childhood toys in plaster, the white forms then seemed to me akin to archaic sculptures. The casting or replication process created a certain level of remove, rendering the forms universal rather than individual icons. But at the same time, I felt a greater intimacy between the subjects and myself. These objects I then used as maquettes for paintings: inserting them into landscapes both real and imagined.
The process of creating the interaction between the sculptures and landscapes has elicited unimagined elements and surprises. Sometimes the sculptural element is envisioned first and then I must find it’s location, at other times the opposite occurs, with the landscape initiating the object.
The images I have created also take inspiration from my fascination with with monolithic icons of antiquity: such as the enormous heads erected by the Olmec (their culture now extinct these giant heads left behind in the landscape, almost like boulders remaining centuries after a glacier has passed, seem odd, out of place, even magical: the objects of mythic rites or even other worlds). These icons make me question the place of the icon in contemporary culture and wonder at what will be the relic of our lives once we too have disappeared.
In the works where I am incorporating the cast or sculpted elements into paintings of contemporary American landscapes, they too seem like ruins or monoliths, and become archeological evidence of a society with questionable substance to leave behind.
And although many of these works are devoid of human forms, there is sometimes the evidence of their passing: seemingly inhabited ruins depict post-apocalyptic scenes where the individual in residence is patching together a life, patching together the traces of the past; making the most of what is left and finding solace and perhaps even joy within the aftermath.
Guno Park works and lives in Brooklyn, NY. He is originally from Korea and spent most of his life in Toronto, Canada.
“I’m exploring my cognitive architecture as landscapes. Recalling childhood dreams and places I used to live, I’m using scratch boards as a medium to revisit an old past time and to reveal whats occupying my mind currently.” ~ Guno Park
Maya Brodsky was born in Belarus and raised in Brookline, Massachusetts, Maya received Bachelors degrees in painting and philosophy from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2008 before attending the Academy. Her paintings are inspired by notions concerning the connection between past and present and how one’s memory of the past is formed and changed visually. She hopes to allow viewers a glimpse into her personal vision and depict that which she considers ephemeral and therefore precious. By depicting the specific form of her personal experience, she hopes to protect it from the obscuring effects of time, as well as to imply the existence of something that transcends the particular forms of her subjective reality.
For immediate release:
Media inquiries: Tun Myaing firstname.lastname@example.org (917)378-3700
is proud to present
September 21 – October 12, 2012
Opening reception September 21, 6 – 9 pm
“But after a time allowed for it to swim,
“Instead of proving human when it neared
“and someone else additional to him,
“as a great buck it powerfully appeared.”
We are creatures built for encounters. Some of our favorite past times revolve around meeting new people, talking to them, passing a judgment, and, if we are lucky, understanding them a little. This is who we are – frequently judgmental, occasionally insightful, hopelessly social, and hopefully, empathetic. These are traits we living beings picked up from our encounters with fellow living beings.
Once in a while, however, this peculiar chance presents itself to us: to encounter not a person, but an object. Not to simply see and acknowledge it, but to meet it; not to simply consider it, but to empathize with it; not to see it through our eyes, but to see ourselves through its eyes. This moment is almost always fleeting, indecipherable, and indescribable; we feel it for a moment – and often walk away with a cautious shrug, unable to tell anyone precisely what we felt. What we felt, however, was a kind of encounter – an encounter with a nonliving being, a greeting from the universe, a momentary conversation with Everything Else. The Living Things Exhibit has one aim – to make the conversation longer.
Our penchant for using objects as metaphors is well documented. Dutch still life is replete with depictions of spoiled fruit, bones, half-empty glasses, and human skulls – objects that represent our fears, our mortality, and us. The work of a few newer artists (such as Antonio Lopez Garcia) expands on that idea. An object is no longer a symbol. The sense of time and decay tells us the story of the object; our story, merely one of many, takes a back seat to the stories of Everything Else. Changed and molded by time, the object lives a non-life, emphatically still and indifferently different.
We too are objects. The human body – our first birthday gift, a collection of mechanical and electric machinery, is among the most familiar and least understood objects. Intricate and capricious, it has its own rules that we are not privy to. It grows and withers, it becomes hungry, it lusts after other bodies, it gives away our deepest secrets. Sometimes it is treated as a tool, traded for pleasure and, in its workings, it remains an object – an object that frustrates, fascinates, and inspires. Only in death does the body reveal what it truly is – a thing, an object, a story of Everything Else. The living world of animals and botany all live to tell this tale, a union of universal conversation. This connection of the living world and the world of things has inspired many artists throughout centuries – to this day.
The artists exhibited in Living Things continue and expand on this tradition, bringing their unique contemporary vision of the bizarre and eloquent world of the insentient. Acknowledging and celebrating the materiality of their work the artists of Living Things talk to the viewer with the voice of Everything Else.
For further information on the Art Foundry, please visit: theartfoundry.us
Art Foundry 310 E 23rd Street, # 12F (buzzer 96), New York, NY 10010
Yulia Levkovich has completed her rigorous training at The Academy of Realist Art under the tutelage of Michael John Angel. She then went on to complete her MFA at the New York Academy of Art. Her methodology is modeled on 19th century atelier practices that were derived from Renaissance tradition. Yulia is the recipient of numerous awards from the Ontario College of Art and Design as well as the New York Academy of Art and has works on display in private collections in the US and abroad.