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New York
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Group Exhibition
Jane Kim/ Thrust Projects
114 Bowery,, #301, New York, NY 10013
March 2, 2008 - April 6, 2008


Origin and Hélio Oiticica
by Yaelle Amir


This small exhibition at Thrust Projects in Chinatown brings together four local artists who are linked by their cultural heritage and mutual admiration for the Brazilian artist Hélio Oiticica (1937 – 1980). The exhibition’s organizer and participant Johanna Unzueta titled this show after a saying coined by Oiticica: “Seja marginal, seja herói” (be marginal, be a hero). Although the premise for the exhibition is slightly vague, it successfully facilitates a dialogue between the works of each artist, while allowing them room to express the influences of their individual backgrounds.

Chilean artist’s Cristóbal Lehyt’s oil on aluminum paintings present varied imagery of the culture and landscapes of his homeland. The video by Spaniard Itziar Okariz depicts the artist performing several variations of the irrintzi, the traditional Basque shrill to indicate a joyous moment. Unzueta, a Chilean, exhibits three of her hand-sewn felt sculptures that mimic industrial objects such as a pipe and a wheel barrel.

Finally, fusing the disparate works in the gallery is the scattered wall drawing by Felipe Mujica from Chile, who also presents drawings of geometric patterns derived from old Chilean posters. Deeply personal, these works portray the artists’ solid connection to their origins, as well as the underlying inspiration that is embodied here in Oiticica’s persona.

 

- Yaelle Amir

(*Images, from top to bottom: Itziar Okariz, be marginal, be a hero, March 2 - April 6, 2008; Thrust Projects, Variations (looking right), 1992, Ilford Polyester RC print, 30 x 40 in, Courtesy of Thrust Projects, New York. Cristóbal Lehyt, be marginal, be a hero, March 2 - April 6, 2008; Thrust Projects, Violeta (flowers), 2005, Oil on aluminum, 30 x 20 in, Courtesy of Thrust Projects, New York. Johanna Unzueta, be marginal, be a hero, March 2 - April 6, 2008; Thrust Projects, Wheel Barrel, 2008, Sewn felt, dimensions variable, Courtesy of Thrust Projects, New York. Felipe Mujica, be marginal, be a hero, March 2 - April 6, 2008; Thrust Projects, Structural Constellation I, Joseph Albers; 2008, Charcoal and acrylic paint on paper, 28 x 22 in, Courtesy of Thrust Projects, New York.)



Posted by Yaelle Amir on 3/16/08

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