Patrick Painter Inc. is proud to present an exhibition of recent works by Francesca Gabbiani in our West Gallery at Bergamot Station. Featuring four new pieces of work as well as a selection of works from 2008, this solo exhibition demonstrates Gabbiani’s continued development of her technique and the themes of ambiguity, ornamentation, the ominous and the fantastic.
This exhibition features a series of mirror pieces that explore Gabbiani’s interests in voids and portraits, depth and superficiality, mythology, and the dimensions of time. Gabbiani creates these deceptively simple works through her use of layered construction paper. She uses a computer to generate an image and essentially uses that image as a kind of grid onto which she places meticulously hand-cut pieces of colored paper. She then carefully builds up the layers of paper to create a balance of color and texture, depth and perspective.
These explorations can be seen clearly in the piece,NYX’s, 2009. Here Gabbiani constructs a montage of natural elements in psychedelic blues and oranges in this ornate mirror. Moths, snails, and other creepy crawly insects adorn the labyrinthine border. A dark blue oval occupies the center of the piece, creating a disturbing atmosphere in its empty void. When viewed up close, the viewer will see his or her own reflection in the glass of the frame inside of the blue oval, completing the mirror and drawing the viewer into the work.
Dedicated to Nyx, the Greek goddess of the night, Gabbiani constructs an alluring atmosphere of beauty and danger. The delicate wings of the moths, juxtaposed with the sharp snapping jaws of the crocodile, create a perfect balance between the beautiful, decorative elements and the dangerous undertones. There are various mushrooms situated around the border, all depicted in an intense electric blue. These mushrooms tower over the other creatures and plants, dominating the border. They contribute a mystical element to the piece, referencing both their poisonous attributes as well as their psychedelic implications.
Born in Montreal and raised in Switzerland, Gabbiani studied at the École Supérieure des Beaux Arts in Geneva and the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam. She went on to receive her MFA from UCLA in 1997, and currently lives and works in Los Angeles. Since then, her work has been exhibited at such prestigious institutions as the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Armand Hammer Museum, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles. Her work is included in such public collections as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles.
The opening reception will be held on Saturday, September 12, 2009 from 6-8pm.
(Image: Francesca Gabbiani, NYX's, 2009. Courteys of the artist and Patrick Painter Gallery, LA)