Recently, the Hubble Ultra-Deep Field imaging system unveiled the deepest portrait of the visible universe ever achieved by humankind, that reveals the first light from 13.5 billion years ago. The exposure lasted for eleven and a half days and is the as far back as the human eye has seen to the origins of the universe.

Collapse, Antonucci’s first solo show, addresses these awe-inspiring galactic portraits in a purist vocabulary imbued by the hand of the artist. With the topic of the photographic universe at the forefront of scientific observation and contemporary art making, this body of work seeks to re-contextualize Hubble’s image through an opaque lens, so as to re-negotiate the romantic notions of the viewer and subject matter itself. As an image presenting truth, the Hubble Ultra-Deep still evokes an undeniable mysticism, sense of wonder, and romance. In this investigation, Antonucci pays homage to the beauty held within the visual landscape of the cosmos while extracting a veritas all his own.

Antonucci received his MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute in May of 2010. During 2009 he completed a residency exploring video and printmaking in Berlin. His self-made book inspired by the Hubble Ulta-Deep Field images, First Light, was published this year by Conveyor Arts. Currently Antonucci is occupying a printmaking residency at the Kala Art Institute in Berkeley and he resides in San Francisco.

~ Press release from Wire and Nail Gallery Site

To learn more about Luca Nino Antonucci and his work, please click on the exhibition image above or click here.

 

Bye Bye Kitty!!! Between Heaven and Hell in Contemporary Japanese Art Exhibition at Japan Society

In a densely urbanized, highly stratified society situated in the heart of an earthquake zone, the fear that the worst could easily happen lies at the back of many minds. ~David Elliott, Independent Curator

The past week has been a sobering reminder of nature’s uncontrollable force. As much as we would like to understand it, whether it be through science or art; the fact still remains that it is unpredictable as it is powerful. Yet, the human spirit is resilient and reflective on how such a catastrophe forces the best human qualities to surface and assist in efforts to connect and re-build. The Bye Bye Kitty!!! Between Heaven and Hell in Contemporary Japanese Art exhibition at the Japan Society in New York is a timely show that provides those of us miles away from the devastation a look into both the culture as well as the country’s psyche. In the desire to understand other human beings, the hope is that we better understand ourselves in order to provide authentic and present engagement.   

One of my favorite New York Times art writers, Holland Cotter, published an art review titled, Anxiety on the Fault Line, regarding the Bye Bye Kitty!!! show. It is, certainly, worth the read.

With the artist’s reception in a large Budget rental truck, accompanied by a performance piece involving libations and black lights, “Proliferations Part 2” was both provocative and engaging. Viewing the show itself meant being escorted by minivan through a security gate to a roll-up-door storage unit, which was brought down once participants had entered. Viewing works in close proximity not only invoked a strong sense of anticipation, but a participatory aspect to the actual exhibition. “Proliferations Part 2” comes from the curatorial collective OFF Space, which is composed of artist-curators Kathrine Worel, Elyse Hochstadt, and Emmanuelle Namont Kouznetsov. The exhibition included works by Alexis Arnold, Alicia Escott, Michael J. Ryan, and Erica Gagsei. The pieces exhibited were constructed from man-made objects, transformed into organic shapes and forms that were then deliberately set against a wooden backdrop.

With their technologically based pieces, artists David Stein and Peter Foucault utilized this confined location to illustrate the dichotomous nature of excess and lack within a space. Michael Kerbow’s Meat Map simulated a pull-down wall map, thus creating a simulacra of memory based on grammar school geography classes.

In comparison, a viewing of “Proliferations Part 1” at Rhodes & Fletcher Wealth Management offices congruently emphasized the various ways in which environment plays a role in our perception and reading of art. Although no special code was needed, “Part 1” required permission in the form of an appointment to view the works. In “Part 1,” there was a clear distinction between art and venue, whereas “Part 2” drew heavily from the environment to provide the viewer context. Artists from “Part 2” palpably incorporated the environment to have each piece function and become experiential. Although extremely different settings, both sites obligated the viewer to engage in a process of perception and valuation. This engaging was as much a part of the exhibition as the work itself, though that might not have been the original intention. Overall, it would be difficult for a viewer to ignore the environment in these exhibitions, as they are so different from the typical gallery setting we have become so accustomed to.

Originally published to Art Practical for Shotgun Reviews March 2010

Photos from Proliferations-Part 2

This slideshow requires JavaScript.