In Galleries 3 and 4, Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects is pleased to present a solo exhibition of new paintings and drawings by Raffi Kalenderian in the context of Pacific Standard Time.
Working both from life and from photographs, Kalenderian features his friends in a series of intricate portraits. His paintings and drawings convey both an intimate moment between artist and sitter and a dreamlike detachment that places his subjects in a peculiar equilibrium between reality and illusion. Sometimes, the same character appears numerous times in an image, as a strange shadow figure, a somewhat less tangible Doppelgaenger whose co-existence seems dependent on their counterpart. These flat, less two-dimensional secondary figures load the portraits up with a psychological meta-reality, a dreamlike level of consciousness that seems to exist beside or underneath the visible world. In his own words, the artist describes his work as portraits done from life in which the social aspect is incredibly meaningful to me. Technology can be isolating, so sitting with a friend for a few hours and observing them, talking, is a great way to slow things down. And the time frame forces me to look and work fast, to use observation as a springboard for invention. Plaid shirts provide the opportunity for distortion and abstraction. A pattern in the sofa takes over, spills into the foreground. Plants everywhere. The drawing becomes, among other things, a record of this time together, a record of existence. Often, the decisions I have to make rapidly in the live setting lead to painting and drawing moments that are more exciting than anything I could have done alone.
Raffi Kalenderian graduated with a BFA from UCLA in 2004. His work has been featured in solo exhibitions at Galerie Peter Kilchman, Zurich, Switzerland, at the Black Dragon Society, Los Angeles and in group exhibitions at the University Art Museum, Long Beach; Kunstmuseum St Gallen, St Gallen, Switzerland; Eleven Rivington, New York, NY; and at Kantor/Feuer Gallery, Los Angeles. This is his first exhibition at the gallery.
Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects is located at 6006 Washington Blvd in Culver City, 1 block west of La Cienega at Sentney Avenue, on the south side of the street. Gallery parking is available across the street from the gallery off of Sentney Avenue. Gallery Hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 11 am – 6 pm and by appointment.