The Benjaman Gallery Group is pleased to announce Anthony Leone: Grape Farm, curated by Emily Tucker and Dana Tyrrell. Grape Farm is the first exhibit of Leone’s work in Buffalo, and has grown out of a solo exhibit at the State University of New York at Fredonia Technology Incubator in Dunkirk, New York.
A native of Fredonia, New York, Leone has studied at both Syracuse University as well as SUNY Fredonia, the latter where he earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in 2014. Leone has exhibited widely across the United States in venues as far flung as North Adams, Massachusetts and Los Angeles, California. Prior to completing his BFA, Leone held the position of Associate Director at the acclaimed ACE Gallery Beverly Hills, in addition to curating the 2014 exhibition Strange Allure in Jamestown, New York.
Anthony Leone’s artwork reflects his outsider status. At a moment when contemporary art is isolating and cold, Leone’s sharply informed paintings, drawings, greeting cards and varied artistic ephemera reflect the strange and irreverent moment in which we are all sharing. Leone’s practice and subsequent bodies of work - bridging the disciplines of drawing and painting - are equal parts quixotic, autobiographical, and darkly funny.
Inspired in equal measure by the work of Jean Michel Basquiat and long-time mentor Alberto Rey, Leone’s work leans into its own strangeness. With imagery as varied as non-committal portraiture, slapdash gold crowns on fields of mint green, and silhouettes of figures captured in paragraphs of paint and everlasting moments of uncertainty, Leone’s vast and undiscovered body of work tilts at the windmills of truth, beauty, darkness, and social connectivity.
Grape Farm draws inspiration from both his bunched and varied body of work, as well as his home of Fredonia, New York, where grapes can be smelled up and down Chautauqua County in harvest season, waiting to be picked and pressed into tomorrow’s wine.
Playing off of Leone’s youth spent on a grape farm - the exhibit will be divided into sections, or “bunches” based upon the varied and multifaceted disciplines which round out the body of his studio practice. Grape Farm will subsequently dig into Leone’s paintings, works on paper, watercolor, sketches, ephemera, and “Greeting Card” series, that stitches together both text and illusory images.
Anthony Leone: Grape Farm opens Friday, October 13, 2017 with a reception from 8 - 11pm. The exhibit runs through November 25, 2017.