A Greek Play with a Main Character Named Oblivious

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Untitled, 2009
A Greek Play with a Main Character Named Oblivious

547 West 27th St, 2nd fl
New York, NY 10001
June 23rd, 2009 - July 31st, 2009
Opening: June 23rd, 2009 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Tuesday through Saturday 11:00 to 6:00 PM or by appointment.


Adam Parker Smith

A Greek Play with a Main Character Named Oblivious

June 23 - July 31, 2009

Opening reception: Tuesday, June 23, 6 - 9 PM

Priska C. Juschka Fine Art is pleased to announce A Greek Play with a Main Character Named Oblivious, Adam Parker Smith's second exhibition at the gallery. With this exhibition, Smith continues his ongoing exploration in various media of the cognitive ambiguity of our feelings - what lies beneath the surface of our emotional memory.

Upon entering the exhibition space, the word "CELEBRATE," in capital charred wooden letters, spells out an emotional fragility Smith investigates further with this show. Invoking Harold Pinter's plays, The Homecoming (1964) and Celebration (1999), Smith's works assume quasi-characters who play out a psychological ambiguity where celebratory events, a birthday party, an anniversary and their commemorative rites, become not only an occasion of joy, but a testimony to the unspoken emotional turmoil of the characters involved.

Smith sculpturally paraphrases Sigmund Freud's The Uncanny - a cognitive dissonance or ‘uncanniness' in our domestic sphere, provoked by an uncomfortable feeling caused by simultaneously holding contradictory ideas or beliefs - and subjects the viewer to a repertoire of psychological references.

The show's title points to a fictitious character, Oblivious, signifying complete unawareness of one's surroundings or the absorption in some thought that induces forgetfulness. Recalling the Greek goddess and river of unmindfulness, Lethe, whose water caused the revocation of memory for the ones who unwittingly drank from it, Smith's implied character leads his audience through an ostensibly loosely connected body of work interwoven by association. An upside down inflatable children's pool, pinned to the ceiling with Mylar balloons; a tall coffee table holding a miniature plastic amusement ride horse that balances on its nose while a carved wooden face holds the coffee table in its mouth about half-way up the base; and a crooked fireplace made from wood whose surface is scratched obsessively and donned with a gold necklace spelling out Pussyfart - alludes to more than just a discordant home. Smith tackles domestic taboos like abuse and violence while hinting that the characters of this artifice are to a degree unaware of the implications - and partially willing to pretend that the party, and therefore the ploy, must go on...

Adam Parker Smith was born and raised in Northern California. He currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. He holds a BA in Fine Art from the University of California at Santa Cruz, CA and an MFA from the Tyler School of Art, Temple University, PA. His work has been the subject of several solo and group exhibitions nationally and internationally, including It Feels Good to Be Faithful to You, Delaware Center for Contemporary Arts, Wilmington, DE (2005-06); The Peekskill Project, Peekskill, NY (2008); State of the Art: New York, Urbis, Manchester, UK (2008) and most recently, Bold as Love, in the Broadway Windows at New York University, New York, NY (2009). Smith has been selected for numerous awards and residency programs such as the Chashama Studio Program, New York, NY (2006-08); the Blue Sky Program, Woodstock, IL (2007); the Bemis Center for Contemporary Art Residency Award, Omaha, NE (2007-2008); the Jentel Residency Program, Banner, WY (2008); the Djerassi Resident Artist Program, Woodside, CA (2008); and most recently, the Elizabeth Foundation Studio Award (2009). Smith has also been accepted into the Sculpture Space Residency Program, Utica, NY (2010).

GALLERY HOURS: Tuesday - Saturday, 11 AM - 6 PM or by appointment.