Serena Cole in “Fabrications” @ Marx & Zavattero

FABRICATIONS
Artists: Libby Black, Jennifer Celio, Serena Cole, Melissa Manfull, and Taravat Talepasand
January 4 – February 5, 2011
Opening Reception: Saturday, January 8, 5:00 – 7:00 PM
Marx & Zavattero, San Francisco


Serena Cole
I’m an Animal I, 2010
22.25″ x 16.5″, watercolor, gouache, & colored pencil on paper

Triple Base gallery artist Serena Cole will be featured in a new show at Marx & Zavattero titled “Fabrications”. This work on paper exhibition focuses on five women artists hailing from the Bay Area and Los Angeles who depict reality at odds with imagined states of being. Utilizing majestic iterations of critiques on society, fashion, and environmental alteration & decay, each artist’s work makes use of decisive marks to graft the external world into something less tangible. Intimate and mysterious, the work in Fabrications promises to establish conditions of suspended animation and fantasy.

Jennifer Celio’s delicately rendered graphite landscapes manipulate perception, creating delightfully naïve iterations in which artificial and natural imagery fuse to become newly impossible sites. Hinting at the contemporary threat of environmental degradation, Celio’s dense drawings depict seemingly mundane spaces that have been artificially altered or supercharged.

Melissa Manfull’s richly colored watercolor and ink works push the space of the paper into an irregular maze of dizzying architecturally impossible spaces. Tightly rendered decorative architectural elements bleed out into colored washes reminiscent of Helen Frankenthaler stain paintings, creating drawings that are in constant states of suspension – toggling back and forth between explosion and implosion – her delicate marks resemble the fragility of a dream becoming artificial oases or nightmares.

Libby Black and Serena Cole create works that highlight fashion as a starting point for fabricating new fictions. Mining the fashion world’s exoticized fantasy, Cole’s limp, emaciated models exude a pride in the dream they sell and at the same time deny and elicit a sense of desire. Constructed directly from fashion ad campaigns, Cole’s signature airy brushwork in ink, watercolor, & gouache suggests a hazy altered state and fairytales gone awry. Black’s luscious gouache & graphite drawings take desire into new realms of illusion. Using direct references to extraordinary luxury goods, Black devilishly depicts luxury and class as an empty surface. Branded goods are paired with seemingly mundane objects, or models are set within fantastical spaces that peddle the good life, all the while leaving room for reflection and her signature sense of humor.

Taravat Talepasand’s highly detailed, figurative graphite on paper pieces delve beyond the actual, accentuating her personal inventions to address the complicated cultural and surface identity of her dual heritage as an Iranian and American. Using herself as primary subject, Talepasand masquerades in a variety of iconic poses that challenge traditional hierarchies in art and society, both in the United States and in Iran.

In “Fabrications” each artist addresses an array of highly personalized and constructed realities that are alternately parable and horror story. The exhibition guarantees to present a visual feast ranging from the bold contrast of stark black and white graphite works by Talepasand and Celio to the lush color-laden pieces by Manfull, Black, and Cole.

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