Alexandra Manukyan "Secrets and Confession", Frieda Gossett "Birds" & Krystopher Sapp "When a Good Man Goes to War"

Alexandra Manukyan "Secrets and Confession", Frieda Gossett "Birds" & Krystopher Sapp "When a Good Man Goes to War"

Alexandra Manukyan “Secrets and Confession”, Frieda Gossett “Birds” & Krystopher Sapp “When a Good Man Goes to War”

January 6 – 29, 2012
Opening Reception: Friday, January 6th, 8-11 pm

Alexandra Manukyan “Secrets and Confession”

The central theme that unites all of Alexandra Manukyan’s paintings examines how seemingly separate and isolated life experiences actually disguise the extent of our individual and communal bonds. The “masks” and the accompanying identities we all assume depending on the life role we must play, obstructs the conscious mind from acknowledging what truly unites us through the isolation and chaos: our shared encounters of pain, loss, desire, and longing for serenity and acceptance. The false facades we all manufacture to adapt and belong also renders most blind and lost in a world where the meaningless has somehow become meaningful and the idea of a shared honest self devoid of hidden agendas all too infrequent.

I focus on combining traditional oil painting techniques with surrealist symbolism to communicate the immediate and lasting impact of technological innovations on the human body and psyche. One recurring motif in my paintings often appears as the feminine form bearing the burdens of worldly grief and mistakes on her body bowing in resignation to a seemingly inevitable fate: the acquiescence of the corporeal state to the encroaching dominance of modern technologies conjoining itself like an apathetic demon of silicon and circuitry cursing more than fulfilling promises of beauty and comfort.

– Alexandra Manukyan

Alexandra attended the College of Fine Art and Design and State University of Yerevan/Armenia before emigrating to the Unite States to study Textile and Graphic Design at UCLA. Since 1990 she has worked extensively in Fashion and Entertainment, designing movie posters, key art and sets. This is her first solo exhibition.

Frieda Gossett “Birds”

Frieda Gossett has always been an artist to some degree. After a childhood of drawing and doodling, followed by an adolescence in junior high and high school art classes, unwittingly following Mark Ryden’s youthful creative arc (“He went to my schools a year before me. Dammit, where are those year books?!”), Frieda operated as a self taught artist until the charade grew tiresome. In 2001 she began attending Art Center College of Design and became a “professional”.

Today she works primarily with leather, building objects not normally associated with the medium. Birds, kites and insects are among the subjects she represents. Their lighter than air, delicate natures run counter to rugged, hand-tooled leather better suited for boots and saddles. Frieda also does small watercolor portraits of authors and interesting strangers.

For BIRDS I have continued to build my leather aviary but with a twist: Famous Aircraft. My father was in the Air Force and I came within inches of joining myself. I avoided that horror show but have held on to my dad’s passion for airplanes. (All while really hating to fly. Go figure.) I decided to combine birds and planes to mix up natural flight and man-made flying machines.

–Frieda Gossett

Krystopher Sapp “When a Good Man Goes to War”

Krystopher Sapp has had a lifetime fascination with the machines of war. In his latest series of assemblage and sculpture, Sapp has gone to great lengths to acquire rare and powerful antique weapons, changing them from tools of death into elegant works of art and enhancing the natural beauty of objects created with heinous intent. While his chosen medium and aesthetic are reminiscent of his contemporary, Kris Kuksi, Sapp’s work has far more in common with that of Al Farrow, who also uses actual ammunition to build statements on the dichotemy of design versus purpose. And unlike either of them, Krys Sapp is entirely self-taught.

When A Good Man Goes to War contain pieces constructed from the parts of a real Springfield rifle, a Russian PPS submachinegun, a .44 calibre handgun, a grenade launcher, helmets and an actual pipe organ –for in the theater of war, it’s only fiting that there be musical instruments to provide a theme for battle.

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