Installation photo credit: Mikhail Mishin
Raffi Kalenderian & Bari Ziperstein
EXPO Chicago, Booth 201
April 13 – 16, 2023
Vielmetter Los Angeles is pleased to present a two-person presentation of new works by Raffi Kalenderian and Bari Ziperstein for EXPO Chicago. Both based in Los Angeles, Kalenderian and Ziperstein, work in highly patterned and intricately detailed modes in painting and ceramics respectively. In the spirit of collaboration, Kalenderian and Ziperstein conceived of their works for this presentation to be in dialogue with each other– Kalenderian’s paintings depict the imagined interiors of Ziperstein’s ceramic buildings, referencing Soviet-era architecture and design.
Kalenderian, known for his portrait paintings that depict friends, family, and a milieu of local artists and creatives builds up densely elaborate compositions that transform interior and exterior spaces into ornate, nearly dreamlike scenes. In his newest works, Kalenderian takes inspiration from Ziperstein’s practice which centers on a highly researched interest in Brutalist architecture and Soviet-era design, placing his portrait subjects into interiors based on archival images and patterns from the same time period. Kalenderian’s style melds seamlessly with the highly decorous interior spaces, textiles, etc. that are often the source material for Ziperstein’s work making for an unexpected collaboration that delights in exuberant colors and richly ornamented interiors.
Since 2015, Ziperstein has focused her research-based practice on Brutalist architecture and Soviet propaganda along the lines of posters, textiles, and everyday domestic items. Her research intersects both her interest in exploring her family's history and the politics of aesthetics. Transmuting the forms of Brutalist architecture and patterns of Soviet-era textiles and design into discrete sculptures and wall works in ceramic, Ziperstein’s works are heavily detailed with intricate surfaces, raucous colors, and complex structures. Her suite of sculptures acts as a miniature city of bijoux buildings tessellated with carved shapes and patterns, reconstructing their distinct forms into objects that interrogate and contradict her source materials' original intentions. In a series of wall works, the shape of which is inspired by 1980s TV sets, Ziperstein’s ceramic sculptures use a singular form to underscore the seriality of the Soviet agenda and reimagine their forms into highly decorous surfaces that relish in the play between her choice of color, mastery in glazing, and ornamental carving and convey the desire to transmute a unifying message.
Raffi Kalenderian (b. 1981, Los Angeles) graduated with a BFA from UCLA in 2004. His work has been featured in solo and group exhibitions at University Art Museum, Long Beach,CA; Kunstmuseum St Gallen, St Gallen, Switzerland; the Saatchi Gallery, London, UK; Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Santa Barbara, CA; Nassima Landau Foundation, Tel Aviv, Israel; Miles McEnery Gallery, New York, NY; Galerie Peter Kilchmann, Zurich, Switzerland; Tif Sigfrids, Comer, Georgia; McEvoy Foundation for the Arts, San Francisco, CA; Buchmann Galerie, Berlin, Germany; Galerie Lefebvre & Fils, Paris, France; Lundgren Gallery, Palma de Mallorca, Spain; Eleven Rivington, New York, NY; and Brand New Gallery, Milan, Italy. His work is in the collections of the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Minneapolis Institute of Art, and Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
Bari Ziperstein (b.1978 in Chicago, IL) lives in Los Angeles, CA. She received a Master of Fine Arts from the California Institute of the Arts, Valencia, CA in 2004 and a Bachelor of Fine Arts with a certificate in Women’s Studies from Ohio University, Athens OH in 2000. Solo exhibitions of her work have been presented at Bethel University, Minneapolis, MN; Museum of Art, Architecture, and Design, Santa Barbara, CA; Wignall Museum of Contemporary Art, Rancho Cucamonga, CA; Long Beach City College Project Space, Long Beach, CA; The Harris Art Gallery, University of La Verne, La Verne, CA; and the San Francisco Arts Commission, San Francisco, CA; Charles Moffett Gallery, New York, NY; and Nino Mier Gallery, Los Angeles, CA.
Her work has been included in group exhibitions at Wende Museum, Culver City, CA; Craft Contemporary, Los Angeles, CA; Ben Maltz Gallery, Otis College of Art & Design, Los Angeles, CA; American Museum of Ceramic Art, Pomona, CA; Vincent Price Art Museum, Los Angeles, CA; 18th Street Projects, Santa Monica, CA; Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, Los Angeles, CA; Armory Center for the Arts, Pasadena, CA; California Museum of Photography, Riverside, CA; Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, Los Angeles, CA; Orange County Center for Contemporary Art, Santa Ana, CA; Nina Johnson, Miami, FL; and Jeffrey Deitch, New York, NY.