Artists Reception: Thursday April 3, 5:30 -- 7:30pm
Exhibition Dates: April 3 -- May 31, 2008
Gallery 415 is pleased to announce concurrent spring exhibitions by Cuban-born installation artist Ramsés Larzábal and Venezuelan sculptor Vicente Antonorsi -- two artists who infuse new life into the Latin American abstractionist/constructivist tradition. Already well known around Latin America and to Latin collectors here, both artists make their US gallery debut with stunning, sophisticated work assembling vernacular non-art materials into meticulous geometric forms. Although distinctly different proposals, the two shows converge into a kind of dialogue between siblings sharing a single artistic/genetic heritage (i.e., minimalist, pure, geometric, abstract sculpture) but with divergent temperaments.
Ramsés Larzábal with 'Anda Solo' (Walking Alone) finds beauty and inspiration in humble materials: drinking straws, nylon fishing line, twine, balloons, inner tubes, ribbons, plastic beads, PVC pipe, wire, bamboo, cardboard, and springs. These goods, which he buys or scavenges, are transformed by his imagination -- and his obsessive labor -- into complex organisms that blend the cerebral and the organic. The assemblage of lashed-together chop sticks in the humorously titled Happy Hour has a structural affinity to the monumental tube-and-cable sculptures of Kenneth Snelson, but the feeling here is more intimate: this composite tube snakes across the wall searching for metaphors: a feather boa, a molecular model, a kelp tree, a fossil. The hanging tube and shoe-lace structure of Anda Solo (Walking Alone) suggests skeletal bones struggling to walk alone for the first time whereas the lashed and stretched inner tubes of Guapo Amansado (Put in its Place) resembles both a slashing felt-marker drawing and an implement of bondage. The cascading tattered grids of industrial mesh in Que Vainas (Those Thingies) abstractly depict palm leafs when they fall and take on these whimsical and beautiful forms when they dry while the open-weave 'tapestry' of Bien Cortico (Really short) brings a Klee-like sensibility to minimalist form; it's ethereal but, handmade, rather than painted, emphatically material, too. Sandra Pinardi sees in this work both "a kind of instability, a breakdown, an anxiety that encrusts itself into the empty spaces created by the weave" and "the possibility contained in all beings for being something other than they are." The pieces radiate a fragile, luminous transcendence, as if adrift and escaped from a larger structure; transformed by their new autonomy, but also exposed and endangered, they're both seraphic and entropic, fragments of visionary architecture as gossamer and dematerialized as a dream: containers and projectors of feeling.
If Larzábal is in general terms a Romantic, then Vicente Antonorsi with 'Natural' is concerned with form, structure, clarity and beauty, might be construed a Classicist by comparison. Despite his abandonment of the noble-woods typically associated with wood sculptures from this part of the world, Antonorsi opts instead for the less inherently lovely plywood, but transforms it, along with his additions of seed pods, shells, metal, twine, coconut, and leather, into elegant, graceful repositories, even reliquaries that evince the collector's estheticism, the organizer's logic, and the artist's joy of discovery. Classic art aspires to poise and beauty, and Antonorsi's background in design and architecture equip him well to find unusual yet poetically impeccable juxtapositions of forms and materials. Carpet , a small open-weave tapestry of leather cord and seeds, makes for an absurd floor covering, but an endlessly fascinating (and reconfigurable) object, somewhat reminiscent of the knotted maps of preliterate Peru and Oceania. The sticks and twine comprising Amasijo (Shaping) a ball unfit it for any play more physical than mental juggling. With the all white Amuletos (Amulets), the only painted objects in the exhibition, he serenely yet playfully presents the proverbial impossibility of a 'square peg in a round hole'. Antonorsi's delight in assembling and arranging these motley items into rewarding visual objects of Japanese sensitivity and refinement is palpable; he has the gift of perfect visual pitch, creating tone poems about nature and being, in which aggregated diverse elements collaborate contentedly.
Gallery 415 in San Francisco focuses on modern and contemporary art from Latin America. The gallery program challenges the traditional views of Latin American art and showcases the great range of styles, materials, themes and aesthetics in artistic production from this diverse region. The gallery is located in the Union Square area of downtown San Francisco and is open Tuesday-Saturday, 11:00am-5:30pm. For more information please contact: Christina Bosemark 1.415.690.0026 www.g415.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
49 Geary Str. 4th floor | San Francisco, CA 94108 | p: 415.398.2158 | f: 415.341.1137
www.g415.com | email@example.com| Tue - Sat, 11:00am - 5:30pm