TO SAVE THE DAY!
Superheroes in Art
September 21 — November
Since their inception, the presence of super powered human beings in comic books has served as mighty metaphors for societal conditions, both the dreams and the ills. Fictional heroes have progressively led the way in addressing culture’s contemporary problems, from Otherness to citizen’s rights. Even today, with the explosion of Marvel and DC characters onto the silver screen, we see how this dynamic explores human frailties and strengths, our moral and ethical positions, as well as the trials and tribulations of our world.
Contemporary artists have shown the same engagement with our times, often utilizing these comic book denizens as a way to critique the same issues.
To Save the Day! features work by Enrique Chagoya, Chaz Guest, Craig Knight, Aaron Noble, Fernando Rascon, U.S. Department of Illegal Superheroes (ICE DISH)
Enrique Chagoya juxtaposes secular, popular, and religious symbols from ancient to contemporary sources in order to address the ongoing post-colonial clash between Western and non-Western cultures. He works in different media such as painting, drawing, multiples and printmaking.
Discovered during his Parisian days by renowned fashion designer Christian Lacroix, New York-born painter and sculptor Chaz Guest (1961) is one of the most inventive, prolific and important figures in Contemporary American art.
In 1985 Guest graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Graphic Design and created illustrations for French Joyce magazine, where he left his indelible stamp on the world of haute couture fashion, working for Dior, Lacroix, and Yves Saint-Laurent. Guest moved to New York in 1988 where he started painting, following the advice of Lacroix. The artist is known to produce deeply unique moving artworks, with kinetic power that unleashes overwhelming maelstrom of emotions onto canvas. Guest’s work, cataloged as Figurative Expressionism, is rich in color and movement, and will strike your soul to the very depths.
Craig Knight is a painter and drawer, his influences are eclectic and range from Mod subcultural iconography, comics/graphic novels, Neo-Pop, graffiti to art historical movements. Though oil is his favourite medium, he also uses acrylic and watercolour. Recently his Neo-Pop style has developed into a fragmented abstraction of his visual influences. His narrative concerns the construction of the ‘self’, the structure of memories and reality as fragments of existence.
He finds joy in the crowded imagery as metaphor for media saturation and his own conceptual confusion. There is joy in creating a dialogue between the audience and artist- sharing references, meaning and confusion. His work grows organically as ideas develop and explores the construction of the self, our social relationships, the structure of memories and expectations (hopes and dreams), political and shared cultural histories.
Aaron Noble’s work reflects his longstanding interest in the sensual visual poetry of popular culture, as well as the social and psychological undercurrents thereof.
In Chanticleer, a lifelong dream of mine is fulfilled. Working with Master Printer Valpuri Remling at the Tamarind Institute, I attempted to re-create 19th century stone lithography practices to create oversize poster (on two sheets, as the commercial printers did it), advertising my abstract interpretation of the folkloric rooster, who believed that the sun rose because HE crowed, rather than the other way around.
Fernando Rascon is interested in learning through Art; the development and behavior of the mental structures of the human being. He seeks to create interest using tools such as color and form within dynamic compositions, simulating machines or schemes apparently organized, this in order to provoke the analysis of the form and its function to generate curiosity in the viewer and in this way inspire the investigation of the work of Art. He believes that in this dynamic of uncompromising analysis of the result helps to develop the intellect and through this process generate awareness of the true function of a work of art.
U.S. Department of Illegal Superheroes (ICE DISH)
ICE DISH is the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Department of Illegal Superheroes. It is the largest investigative agency in the U.S. dedicated to administering the apprehension and removal of illegal superheroes. Created in 2012 through the merger of investigative and enforcement elements, ICE DISH now has several field offices, detention facilities, ICE DISH UFO's, and other operations in the United States. Through ICE DISH International Affairs, the agency has also had expanded operations in over fifty countries.