About Raffi Kalenderian
Raffi Kalenderian paints disaffected portraits of his young, ambivalent-looking friends against an ultra-flat two-dimensional space, the patterns on clothing and furniture forming elaborate abstractions. “The social aspect is incredibly meaningful to me,” he has said of his practice. “Technology can be so isolating, so sitting with a friend for a few hours and observing them, talking, is a great way to slow things down.” His work attempts to capture a total moment, not merely the sitter in isolation from their environment but the complete psychological framework in which they exist (sometimes depicting a doppelganger alongside his subjects to this end). In Matt Lydon (2008), an abstract network of patterns and lines surround the figure; a circle defines a rug and pillows emerge from small strokes of color. The sitter appears to struggle to break into three-dimensional form from the flat background, imbuing the work with a sense of angst and tension.
American, b. 1981, Los Angeles, California, based in Los Angeles, California