FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 23, 2018
Crazy Like a Fox
156 Orchard Street NY, NY
Featuring works by Alejandro Caiazza
July 23-August 15
Van der Plas Gallery is proud to present an online exclusive on Artsy featuring Alejandro Caiazza. Through his vibrant and, at times, naive appearing works, Caiazza presents a deeply studied world view. His paintings are populated by childlike figures and images from popular culture such as the smiley face and Homer Simpson. At first glance one would assume a daft and perhaps unintelligible perspective but this facade belies a wealth of understanding about the current situation of the world, projecting a “Crazy Like a Fox” mentality.
Caiazza’s works can be divided into three subcategories: Pop Culture References, Weirdos and the Barrio. These subgroups come together to embrace the weirdness within our daily interactions. Sometimes these groups intermingle or are not specific to a particular painting but, a point of reference for understanding his work.
“Flash Guy and Dixie Rainbow Cup Times” and “Luxor of Pharohs” establish a very strong perspective of logos and pop culture. Each work has layers of all too familiar symbols and signifiers set against an inconspicuous background, the image may come across as frenetic but in reality it is no different than the images one is inundated with as soon as they enter the public sphere whether in reality or on the web. Pop Culture’s hold upon the population is more massive than one realizes and almost entirely unconscious until realizes in these images ripe with smiles, sneers and perhaps a few Disney characters.
Caiazza’s work is defined by odd characters given ersatz monikers to stand in for their true identities. One needs to look no further than their neighborhood stoop, their local pub or the carpool lane to recognize the “Weirdos” captured in Caiazza’s “Partners in Crime”, “Skol Vikings”, or “Girl Dream” key pieces of this subcategory in the exhibition. Love them or hate them, they are everywhere, unavoidable and undoubtedly animating our world. These characters would be incomplete without a setting, often called the barrio or Diver City, stand-ins for the neighborhoods Caiazza has called home complete with the characters and advertising familiar to most city dweller, whether it is the neighborhood gossip on the stoop or the hulking billboards populating our skylines.
One may question where these wild things come from, but we need not look any further than the mirror. The naive but sharply witty characters populating Caiazza’s images are reflected squarely in the behavior of society: ugly painted faces reflect ugly behaviors. Caiazza may come across as a madman but he only reveals the truth; he is crazy like a fox is savvy.
Born in Santa Fé Argentina in 1972, Alejandro Caiazza has Italian roots and was raised in Ciudad Guayana, Venezuela. He was trained in architecture and fine arts at the Jose Maria Vargas University in Caracas, Venezuela. His debut solo exhibition opened in April 1999 at the “Sala de Arte de Sidor” in Ciudad Guayana, Venezuela. In 2000 Caiazza moved to Paris, France, where he lived and worked for 10 years, studying at L'École Supérieure Des Beaux-Arts in Paris and attending courses taught by Ouanes Amor. In 2010 he developed a universal language by mixing various traces, signs, figures, and colors, communicating feelings and sensations known to all, and exhibited this work exhibited at the Lavatoio Contumatiale in Rome, Italy. Caiazza currently works and resides in New York City. He continues creating extraordinary pieces that reflect the artist’s emotions. In his most recent work he demonstrates a strong passion for American pop culture, embracing traditional forms expressed in primary colors, and sometimes adopting a ‘naive’ technique.
All inquiries please contact Nicole Lania at Van der Plas Gallery