BROOKLYN, N.Y.- Like the Spice presents Organized Religion, on view through May 5th 2007. This group show of mixed media works will address a variety of subjects from personal religious sentiments to the institutions that either inspire or suppress them. The show addresses concepts such as belief systems, divinity, God, Gods, karma, Hell, apocalypse, eternal afterlife and morality.
Organized Religion focuses on the artists’ personal reactions to issues of belief and religion. The works explore systems of thought and ways of living through the filter of religion…personal and political.
The artists in Organized Religion re-personalize traditional religious faith, examine the effects faith has on believers and those around them and forge new spiritual awareness from personal visions of the beyond.
The current clashes within and between traditional belief systems, secular humanism, and holistic spirituality make faith more rife for artistic exploration now than ever before. These struggles saturate our culture now and their outcomes will determine the cultures of the future.
Artists in the Exhibition: Treasure Frey, attended Virginia Commonwealth University. She is an artist and Illustrator who has had her work published by such organizations as the Peace Corps, the Utne Reader, Entrepreneur Magazine and The Stranger. Inks, gouache, watercolor and collage depict a man falling from the sky in “It is impossible to understand without surrender.” Michael Krynski, was born in Poland and now makes his work in New York. He received his MFA from SVA in 1997. Krynski’s acrylic and pigment on Epson print works “Step Out” and “St. Francis” bring mystery and mythology to ideas of religion and transcendence. Yoshio Itagaki, was born in Japan and lives in New York City. His work has showed in the US, Mexico, Japan, and Europe. In Japan he was the recipient of the Philip Morris Art Award and the Pola Art Foundation Grant. The two pieces for this show, “Cloning Jesus” and “Santa Cross” enact religiously charged urban legends. Seth Cohen, earned his BA from the University of Wisconsin and his MFA from the Hoffberg School of Painting at the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2003. He had a solo show at the Repetti Gallery in Long Island City and shown work in group shows at the Broadway Gallery in New York City. “Signs of Wonders” an oil on canvas and “Temple of the New” a pencil on paper drawing imagine ancient religions inhabiting the contemporary world. Chadwick Whitehead, "Chadwick Whitehead makes images with graphic cuts and distinct strokes. The focus is the narrative and the character of the marks." NY Arts Magazine The beasts of Revelation as described in the Bible are the subjects of Whithead’s works in this show. Jason Bryant, earned his MFA from the Mount Royal School of Art at the Maryland institute College of Art. He lives in New York City. Bryant’s “Georgetown (1973)” oil on canvas depicts the bodily effects of possession on Regan’s body in the movie “The Exorcist”.
Robert Gullie, has showed extensively throughout New York state. Gullie’s three hand-tinted black-and-white photographs; “Poliche D'Arc", "St. Agnes School" and "Priest with Fake Hands" evoke religiously charged dreamscapes. Thomas Clark, earned his BFA from Kutztown University and has shown extensively in Philadelphia. The magical realism of Clark’s drawings evokes a renewed sense of wonder. Heather Boaz, earned her MFA from Mount Royal School of Art at the Maryland institute College of Art. Boaz’s video is the autobiographical animated telling of a grandmother mystical satanic tale of struggle and healing. John Zaso, collage “The Apostle” describes hell in design terms: flames, geometries, wallpaper and burning flesh. Thomas Schmelzer,lives and works in Germany. His work for this show “Heart of Jesus” is hewn from organic materials. Tom Billings, is a painter based in New York City. His painting “Holy Mansions on a Hill Jesus Mentioned” imagines what will happen when Armageddon comes to the gates of Graceland. Tatiana Kronberg, was born in Russia and lives in New York. She earned her BFA from NYU in 1997 and her MFA from Bard/ICP in 2006. Kronberg’s “Mariya 1, 2 and 3” cast the artist as an updated icon.