This past Thursday night at Agora Gallery, our staff was delighted to unveil two exciting new shows, MĂ©lange of Milieau and The Essence of Abstraction. We greeted an energetic, congenial bunch, as artists who had traveled alone or with their families quickly acquainted themselves with one other, with our staff, and their admirers. As one who takes an interest in artistsâ€™ personalities, what I noticed about this group was their passionate dedication to their subjectâ€”sometimes emotional, sometimes theoretical or critical, but always with the purpose of communication.
Edward J. MorĂ©t discusses Home with Essence of Abstraction artist Jane Magarigal.
First, I spoke with one winner of the 2013 Chelsea International Fine Arts competition, Edward J. MorĂ©t, about the activism of his paintings. MorĂ©t defines his goal as the elevation of â€śconscious awareness of the stages of climate change.â€ť I considered the sphericalÂ Home, and MorĂ©t named Californiaâ€™s ongoing drought as one of his concerns. Not all solutions to this crisis are nonthreatening, as the growing number of desalinization plants are extremely expensive and cause brine to be pumped back into the ocean. â€śGlobal warming is no longer a debate,â€ť says MorĂ©t. I inquired about what I found to be his most uniquely surreal work,Â Time For Peace.Â â€śI wanted to portray the essence of the treesâ€™ life,â€ť he explained Â â€śI wanted to emphasize the unity of nature and the power of our collective participation in nature. If we can realize our collective consciousness, then we can begin to heal our environment.â€ť
STAM with the paper series Clouds.
The significance of a communal identity is also treated in the ink-on-paper series of Greek artist STAM, titled Clouds. The setting of the four scenes is woven together by a strong wild and dark tempest. The artist compared storm directly to the clout of financial strain that continues to loom over the Grecian people. STAM hoped to express this idea through the modesty of his materials. â€śThis project cost me nothing, and this is deliberate,â€ť STAM said, â€śThese papers are the cheapest you can find. In the works you can see that due to a strong wind, pieces of the composition become detached. Strong clouds will always come again. Despite the crisis in our country, we can still realize our dreams.â€ť
Robert Kirov stands by Screan
Swiss artist Robert Kirov also prefers to keep his arsenal light. In a discussion of his sculpturalÂ A PM F,Â Kirov told me heâ€™s enjoyed working with duct tape for this project, because â€śitâ€™s angular and versatile, and I try to produce something organic with it. Not many people think of duct tape as organic.â€ť Experimentation is hugely important to Kirovâ€™s artwork. â€śItâ€™s a totally open process,â€ť he said, â€śI have no restrictions. I need a room and my materials.â€ť I was charmed hear him so determinedly assert his lack of method in creation. He could not estimate the amount of time it takes him to complete a work, or even how he strategizes the beginning of a project. In his words, â€śI couldnâ€™t attempt to make something I was expecting, because the artwork changes during the process.â€ť We can ascertain that Kirovâ€™s work represents a truly organic and honest expression of his creative energy.
Fernando Braune, Labutos P.
I always appreciate the opportunity to check in with veteran artists of the gallery. This Thursday marked Fernando Brauneâ€™s third exhibition with Agora Gallery, and he described a new responsibility he feels for his work. â€śAgora has granted me so much visibility,â€ť he told me, â€śand because the demand is much higher Iâ€™ve had to dedicate myself completely to my work.â€ť Since we first exhibited Braune in 2012, he has shown work in London, Florence, Lisbon and Cannes. As a photographer, Braune wants to avoid the categorization of documentarian. â€śI want to take people out of their context. I donâ€™t want to document my subjects, but transform them.â€ť He revealed to me that the photos in this series were taken of a construction site next door to his building. â€śThey were disrupting me,â€ť he chuckled, â€śso I decided to take pictures of them.â€ť The portraits were printed on cotton paper, so that the artist could â€śinterfere with dry pastel, ink, and oil pastel. The volume and texture of the paper is receptive to these colors.â€ť Both mechanically and mentally, Braune has succeeded in transfiguring his subjects.
Claudia Gomez FerĂˇndez with the metaphysical Desapego.
It is always stimulating to engage with the purely abstract. Essence of Abstraction artist Claudia Gomez FernĂˇndez described to me, â€śMy paintings hope to portray ideas something more than what you can touch, the phenomenon that escape the five senses.â€ť I understood the paintings as exploring the physicality of the imagination, the body of which sparks random emotions and associations in our minds. Looking at ComposiciĂłn Uno: Nacimiento del Nuevo Ser Humano (Birth of the New Human Being), FernĂˇndez surprised (and delighted) me by describing light as a false symbol of origin. Light is perceived by those who are conscious, while darkness â€śrepresents the deepest part of all of us. You yourself came out of the darkness.â€ť
Visitors consider series by Javier Porras.
As always, it was a pleasure to socialize with the talented and prudent artists we represent at Agora Gallery. The current exhibitions, MĂ©lange of Milieau and The Essence of Abstraction, each offer a rich repository of very diverse artwork. We invite you to come explore the collection yourself. All of these artists and more have their artwork for sale onÂ Art-Mine.com. Keep yourself updated with the goings-on at the Gallery by subscribing toÂ our blog, and joining ourÂ mailing list.