What do you get when you put fifteen NAGA artists together in a room?
One big, dysfunctional family.
The artists are:
LANA Z CAPLAN
Each artist is represented by one piece, ranging in size, from 4 to 75 inches in height. While the genres are varied—painting, sculpture, photography, holography, video—the materials are even more varied with the inclusion of a found telephone, a rock, beadboard, and a rusted steel remnant.
The exhibiting artists confront the idea of “portrait.” Not surprisingly, the choices they make differ widely. A highly rendered painting of a human or duck might hang next to a minimalist stone assemblage, for example, while a digital video installation might be adjacent to a work made with a multi-step analog photographic process.
Shown at NAGA for the first time, Lana Z Caplan’s piece, Shift, is a 2-channel video of 35 one-minute portraits shot in 3 countries in 2010. Caplan shot one minute of the subject then handed the camera to the subject who then recorded Caplan responding to the subject’s performance. Featuring Caplan’s friends, fellow artists, and family, the video examines the perceived relationship between the subject and the viewer.
Winning the prize for the largest portrait in the show, Gregory Gillespie (1936-2000) is represented by a constructed self-portrait depicting the artist’s smiling face atop a disfigured and cartoonish body. An axe on one side and an actual telephone on the other makes the viewer wonder whether Gillespie’s mischievous smile suggests a guilty pleasure.
Dysfunctional Family: Portraits by Gallery NAGA Artists is on exhibition from February 5 - 27. A reception for the artists and the public will be held at Gallery NAGA on Friday, February 5 from 6 to 8 pm.