Last Saturday, CHG Circa showed us every kind of giant you can think of with their group show “Giants Among Us” (previewed here). Giants are a timeless myth that has inspired artists for centuries. For Circa’s contemporary artists- Anita Kunz, Andrew Brandou, Armando Marino, Benjamin Bryce Kelley, Eric Joyner, Joe Fenton, John Brophy, Korin Faught, So Youn Lee, to name a few- giants are monstrous beasts, revered figures, a narrative and a concept. With so many literal and wildly conceptual ideas, it becomes a sort of game to find the giant in each.
This Saturday, CHG Circa will debut “Giants Among Us,” a group show that challenged artists to interpret the figure of the giant and how it plays out in folklore, contemporary culture and their own mythology.The group of mostly narrative painters each had their own unique interpretation of what a giant might look like. In John Brophy’s digital-looking painting, a triumphant character in a furry battle costume appears to be the giant compared to a small firefly resting on her finger. Korin Faught and Armando Marino also opt for subtle ways of approaching the theme. In Faught’s Impressionistic work, a larger-than-average human skull hints at a giant’s presence, while a dark shadow over a river makes us wonder what’s about to happen in Marino’s piece.
Last Saturday, CHG Circa offered pint sized works by their favorite artists in “Art Collector Starter Kit” 2. If you’re like most collectors, you know how to buy art on a piece-by-piece basis, but may not be all that well versed in the art that is collecting. This show offers a solution. In the gallery’s own words, “The motivation behind an exhibition of all 12”x12” paintings stems from the fact that newer collectors, or enthusiasts, who have never bought an original piece from one of their favorite artists, may now do so.”
Eerily cheery and cheerily eerie, Nouar’s resin-dipped mixed-media works debuted at her solo show “Satisfaction Guaranteed” at CHG Circa in Culver City on July 19. Her confectionary work — somewhere between painting and sculpture, two-dimensional and three-dimensional — was paired with Hikari Shimoda’s (HF Vol. 29) equally vivid, candy-colored series of paintings in her concurrent show “Fantastic Planet, Goodbye Man” opening on the same night.
While in Western culture, bunnies are considered friendly, benign creatures, in Japan they represent lonesome spirits. Hikari Shimoda (featured in Hi-Fructose Vol. 29), a private, contemplative artist, often likens herself to these bushy-tailed furry friends. Based in Nagana, Japan, Shimoda has made LA her temporary home as she prepares for her solo show at CHG Circa, “Fantastic Planet, Goodbye Man,” opening July 19 in Culver City. Coincidentally enough, on the first day of her stay, Shimoda found and rescued a stray pet rabbit who has been her studio companion as she finalizes her new body of work.
Japanese artist Kazuki Takamatsu (featured in Hi-Fructose Vol. 16) has a new solo show opening at CHG Circa on June 21st, “Spiral of Emotions”. The show’s title epitomizes the ghostly spiraling layers in Takamatsu’s handpainted figures that look like 3D graphics. He will exhibit twelve new gouache paintings exploring the emotional disconnect between the old and adolescent generations of Japan. These compositions may be precisely designed with a digital technique called Depth Mapping, but the final result captures feelings that cannot be planned. For his debut exhibition with Corey Helford last year, “Japanese Ideology of Puberty”, Takamatsu infused elements of Japanese pop culture and fantasy that are further employed here. His new subjects appear “lost” and floating through ethereal visions of death, spirituality, and an uncertain future. See more after the jump!