At black maria gallery
20 October – 11 November 2007
Opening Reception: Saturday 20th October, 7:00 – 10:30pm
3137 Glendale Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90039
323.660.9393 & 818.613.9090
Gallery hours: Tues-Sat 12 PM-6 PM or by appointment
Los Angeles – Black Maria Gallery announced “Immigrant Punk,” a group exhibition that will open on Saturday, October 20, 2007, at 7 PM.
Participating Artists: Bask, John Casey, Ken Garduno, Douglas Alvarez, Martina Secondo Russo, Nicoz Balboa, Andre Firmiano, Hagop Belian, Pogo, Nina Nichols, Angela Penaredondo, Claudio Parentela, Sam Saghatelian, Glynnis Reed and Jasko.
According to Black Maria Gallery director Zara Zeitountsian, the exhibition, whose title was inspired by a song by the punk group Gogol Bordello, is homage to a particular facet of the immigrant experience.
“While immigration may be as American as apple pie, there are those individuals or groups who shape an extraordinary reality as they reinvent themselves in a new environment,” Zeitountsian said. “It is this constructive, hugely life-affirming aspect of immigration that our upcoming show celebrates.
“A veritable maelstrom of challenges awaits an immigrant in a new country: the language barrier, unfamiliar rules and ways of doing things, different traditions and cultural approaches, the very imperative of carving one’s own path out of an alien place,” Zeitountsian continued. “What’s significant is that certain immigrants will plunge into that maelstrom with gusto, and will not only tackle all the challenges but color the whole experience in terms of their own cultural roots and identity. I think there’s something of the spirit of punk music and art to all this.”
“Immigrant Punk” will feature new and recent works by a number of local and international artists. A Black Maria Gallery representative said that though not all participating artists are immigrants, most could perfectly identify with the immigrant experience through the style and inspiration of their work or because of their families’ deep immigrant roots.
Zeitountsian further commented on the parallels between punk and immigration. “Punk music and art do not pertain strictly to a specific cultural movement that exploded in the 1970s and continued to evolve on the fringe,” she explained. “Rather, punk is a certain attitude and way of seeing that doesn’t necessarily come with props and a mohawk. It’s about the exuberance and joy of rejecting limitations and doing one’s own thing, of following the call of an inner rhythm and bringing one’s own style to the mosh pit.” “Immigrant Punk” will remain open until Saturday, November 10.
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John graduated from the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston in 1988 with a BFA in Painting. Several years ago he relocated to Oakland, California with his lovely wife Mary. He is obsessed with fictitious human morphology, which he explores in his ink drawings and small sculptures. By depicting the grotesque as pitiable, he illuminates the darkest corners of the mind, seeking redemption for all of us.
VIEW IMAGES | www.bunnywax.com
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Ken Garduno graduated from Art Center College of Design in April 2006. Since graduating, he has been working as a freelance illustrator for various newspapers including; LA Weekly, Pasadena Weekly, Esquire (Russia), The New York Times, LA Citybeat, and other freelance design assignments.
VIEW IMAGES | www.kengarduno.com
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Andre Firmiano was born and lives in the city of São Paulo - Brazil, His work is a mixture of techniques where he develops a study in different atmospheres using ink, paint, pencil, digital, sharpie on fine and more recently spray paint. He wants his work to encourage viewers to reflect on the role of the individual in society as well as the role of societies themselves. São Paulo is coming up in the world as a new center of art & culture and it looks like they'll have no trouble fitting in André Firmiano.
VIEW IMAGES | www.blackheart.com.br/andre
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Martina Secondo Russo
Martina Secondo Russo was born in Genoa, Italy but has lived in New York for most of her life. After attending CalArts in Los Angeles, she and her husband Frank returned to New York in 2003 to open a space to show Underground Pop Art. Martina paints both on canvas and plywood cut into the shapes of limbs and full bodies. She also co-created MF Toys, a line of cute and creepy handmade toys made of cast plastic, silk-screened canvas and faux fur. Her work is inspired by: horror, tattoos, toys, renaissance art, pin-up art, and the juxtaposition of beauty with the grotesque.
VIEW IMAGES | www.mfagallery.net
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Nicoletta Zanchi aka Nicoz aka Nicoz Balboa was born in Rome. She now resides in France, where she is the founder and director of the True Hate Gallery in La Rochelle. Her comics and illustrations appeared in various magazines such as Target Magazine, RUGGED (the Carhart magazine), Stripburger, Look De Book and on online magazines, Ideafixa. Her solo comic-album, LUNATICA is now on electrocomics.com. Nicoz often collaborates with different rock bands and designs rock-posters (Unsane, Motorama, the Normals, the Intellectuals, Bloody Hollies, the Smackdown to name a few). She also participated in group exhibitions at MFGallery of New York, Head Quarters Gallery of Montreal, at the " Dirty Show" in Detroit, and at the Roman, " SKULLS OF ROME" organized by DRAGO editions. Nicoz held a solo show at the Toast Gallery and at the Tribal Act Gallery in Paris.
VIEW IMAGES | http://nicozbalboa.free.fr
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She is the president of The Black Forest Fancies Non-profit Organization in New Orleans. She is a filmmaker, puppeteer, costume designer, screenwriter, performance artist, illustrator and set/stage designer. She began her work traveling variety shows through the lens of carnival, cabaret, circus, and vaudeville. In recent months, she lived as resident artist at The Dream Community in Taipei, Taiwan, where she led workshops as a costume designer, parade organizer and puppet builder before returning to the United States for another whirlwind operetta tour.
VIEW IMAGES | www.sockmonsterforest.com
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Claudio Parentela is from Italy and is an illustrator, painter, photographer, cartoonist, mixed media artist and freelance journalist. He has been active many years in the international underground scene. He has collaborated with a diversity of numerous magazines of contemporary art, literature and comic art in Italy and around the world.
VIEW IMAGES | www.claudioparentela.net
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Glynnis Reed is a multimedia visual artist, working in photography, painting, mixed media collage, and digital art. She earned her MFA in Studio Art from University of California, Irvine in 2003. She has exhibited her work in diverse spaces throughout Los Angeles, including the Craft and Folk Art Museum, Watts Towers, UCLA, Occidental College, and Highways Performance Space. Glynnis creates work that explores issues of identity and place and is interested in the ways social environments shape our notions of the self.
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Angela Penaredondo graduated from San Francisco State University with a bachelor's in Fine Arts, as well as studying in the Queensland College of Art for photography. Although, life after college still gave her a career in Arts administration and organizing, she is making her way back to her roots that initiated her journey in creating art. Not only her own country’s tremendous population of street youth but also all the homeless and ghetto youth in the third worlds inspired this body of new work. She enjoys using mixed media, collage and photography as well as fusing these elements with discarded materials.
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Hagop Belian is inspired by the commonplace of symbolism of daily life; whether it is an old book, discovered photographs, lost letters, found objects or various framework. His work incorporates a wide array of dated and vintage elements that he uses to explore the connection between the unwanted and the lost, the humane and imperfect and age defying imagery.
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Sam Saghatelian is one of the artists representing Armenian pavilion in 2001 Venice Biennale in Italy. He graduated from Yerevan Institute of Architecture and pursued a career in architecture, until in 1988 he started his journey as an artist and a sought after illustrator, right at the brink of the collapse of the USSR and independence of Armenia. In 2002 he was awarded a Fellowship for ArtsLink/ Vermont Studio Center in Vermont, USA and had exhibitions in Vermont Studio Center and New York. Samuel Saga now lives and works in Los Angeles, CA.
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Jasko Begovic uses art as expression, as a means to capture the ineffable, to explain, to understand, to accept, and to overcome. He is an artist whose life has been marked by boundaries, and yet his art is defined by the lack of them. Born in Bosnia, former Yugoslavia, in 1980, his childhood was divided when the war began in 1991. After a civilian exchange he escaped with his family to Croatia and later Germany, before immigrating to the United States. He moved from Kentucky to Tennessee to San Jose. However, it was not until Berkeley, when he was 20-years-old, that he began to produce original, provocative paintings. His art shows the inhumane violence that destroyed his family and homeland, and it has no rules, no exceptions, and no limits.
VIEW IMAGES | www.officialtourist.com
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Pogo is a Los Angeles-based artist who holds a degree in computer animation and graphic design from Art Institute of Los Angeles in Santa Monica. His work, which is often defined by a sharp critique of social inequity, has been exhibited at a number of galleries including Casa De Sauza, Blue Chips, and Part One. He lives in Silverlake.
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