YARON MICHAEL HAKIM: ANTHROPOPHAGY

YARON MICHAEL HAKIM: ANTHROPOPHAGY

On-view by appointment August 27 through October 19, 2017

1645 Vine St. Loft 302, Hollywood, CA 90028

For more information or to view the works, please contact info@artworksprojects.com

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ARTWORKS PROJECTS is pleased to present the second exhibition in its Salon Series, Yaron Michael Hakim: Anthropophagy. Comprising painting, drawing, and sculpture, this exhibition is the first presentation of Hakim’s latest body of work, which takes the cannibal as a metaphor for cultural appropriation and the dissection of his own indigenous, Latin-American, Middle-Eastern, European, and adopted identities. The series developed from the artist’s research into the writings of Christopher Columbus, which describe the “monstrous” inhabitants of the new world (fictionalized depictions intended to justify Queen Isabella of Spain’s colonialist, economic agenda). Columbus’ letters took hold in the 16th-century European imagination, producing wild, popular depictions of such cannibals by artists like Sebastian Münster, whose woodblock prints Hakim appropriates and exaggerates. Hakim’s figurative and semi-abstract works linger on the hybridity, inaccuracies, and spectacle of Münster’s so-called cannibals- their figures drawn from western art, the depicted use of Renaissance technology, and the alleged horrors they performed. As the artist states, “I am captivated by these images because they begin to ask the question, who is cannibalizing who? I have taken Münster’s prints as a point of departure as a way to explore place and placelessness through colonial history and personal history.” At once formally compelling, abject, and historically layered, Hakim’s work identifies with multiple narratives as a way to find agency in his own personal history.

Yaron Michael Hakim (b. 1980, Bogotá, Colombia) lives and works in Los Angeles. He earned his MFA from the University of California, Irvine and a BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art. Hakim has exhibited in Los Angeles at LAXART, Elephant, and Steve Turner; among other galleries. He will be included in a group show at The Box this September as part of the Pacific Standard Time Initiative.

ARTWORKS PROJECTS was founded by Juliet McIver and Bec Ulrich and is committed to bringing awareness to many of the talented and under-represented artists working in Los Angeles today. Launched in June 2017, the Salon Series features solo presentations of new work in a casual, domestic setting.

For more information or to view the works, please contact info@artworksprojects.com

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 Photos: Ruben Diaz

Photos: Ruben Diaz

 

 

Sarah Awad

Artworks Projects is thrilled the inauguration of it's SALON SERIES debuting a selection of painting by Sarah Awad.  Founders Juliet McIver and Bec Ulrich are committed to bringing awareness to some of the many talented and under-represented artists in Los Angeles.

June 4th through August 4th, 2017

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Majorelle, 2016, Oil and vinyl on canvas, 96 x 82 in

 

Artist Statement

My painting concerns have always involved creating space through the negotiation of color, line and form.  In the past, this has included direct figurative content.  In my most recent body of work I considered the subject of the gate as an architectural substitute for the figure. I begin the paintings by approaching them as abstractions of landscapes and use the gate as a conceptual device to close off the painting, proposing a metaphor for the psychological barrier one has to enter through to access a larger territory or field of vision.  The gate, a subject whose form inherently offers a division and organization of the field of vision, sits in the metaphysical of the picture plane, asking the viewer to look at it and through it simultaneously.  I exploit the visually open properties of the wrought iron structures by letting them recede in areas and resurface in others, intervening in the spatial ambitions of the viewer.  Gates give and withhold by offering both visual freedom and a physical boundary or constraint.  Paintings operate in similar ways.  The picture plane serves as a container, with its inherent restrictions, and a portal for transforming material into space.  I made these paintings with an awareness of these two opposing forces, making an effort to both close off and open up the surface, through composition, subject and gesture.

In the course of the last year, I felt my painting practice asking me to move away from line to a firmer understanding of form and edge.  Ironically playing with the subject of the gate, which is basically a line drawing in space, prevented me from fully escaping the act of drawing in painting.   I believe the friction between the desire to abandon line and the necessity of dealing with line through the subject itself has generated the abstract approach to this body of work.  The paintings offer a meditation on the idea of the gate in an abstract sense.  In considering the social function of both domestic and industrial gates as they relate to urban spaces, I found myself examining the logic behind attaching decoration to the security feature of a residence.  The rough iron gate doesn't just sit at the entrance of estates in Beverly Hills and San Marino, but it crops up in almost every neighborhood around Los Angeles, from mass produced security gates in front of doors to warehouses (even my own studio door) to decorative iron work wrapping around home after home in Boyle Heights.  Similar to a painting, the wrought iron gate imposes the history of craft on top of a utilitarian object designed to keep people out.  In  a painting like Studio Door, the gate is the painting; the painting is the gate.  Much like the nude subjects of precious paintings, I felt the subject of the gate was sort of absurd in that I would never be able to escape the decorative aspect of the gate.  So why the gate?  The gate is an interesting substitute for the figure in that in its essential material form it offers an exploration of all the things I'm interested in a division and organization of the field of vision that both surfaces and recedes, asking the viewer to look at and look through simultaneously.  Bringing to mind the psychological metaphor of a mental gate we have to break through, as well as referencing the abundance of wrought iron architecture in the city of Los Angeles, the gate paintings  become meditations on the social function of the gate.  Much like the paintings object, the gate is designed to both reveal and exclude - a structure simultaneously performing utilitarian and aesthetic functions.

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    Photos:  Ruben Diaz

Photos:  Ruben Diaz