FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Passionately Un-objective:
Rhea Carmi
Shane Guffogg

September 9 – October 7, 2006
Opening Reception Saturday, September 9, 6-10pm



5820 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 100, Los Angeles, CA 90036
Contact, James Panozzo
323-935-9100, Fax 323-935-9113
E-mail: james@lawrenceasher.com
Web site:  http://www.lawrenceasher.com
Gallery hours, Tuesday – Friday 11am – 6pm, Saturday, 12noon - 5pm


Rhea Carmi, “Carnaval II”, 2006, mixed media on canvas, 36 x 36 inches.

Lawrence Asher Gallery is proud to present “Passionately Un-objective” a special exhibition featuring two of Los Angeles’ most adept painters. Rhea Carmi and Shane Guffogg manifest their supremacy of verve and ardor on canvas, board and paper.  Both students of life as well as students of painting, these scholars have ensnared lessons while discharging masterstrokes. The works displayed here speak in familiar, guttural tongues while enlightening us of worthier lessons. They prompt reflection thus arousing reaction.
 
Lawrence Asher is proud to join several local galleries and public exhibition venues celebrating The Riverside Art Museum’s major exhibition for the fall of 2006. “Conceived and organized by RAM Senior Curator Peter Frank and RAM Associate Director Andi Campognone, “Driven to Abstraction: Southern California and the Non-Objective World, 1950-1980” provides a succinct but thorough survey of non-objective painting in southern California during the postwar decades – the thirty years during which Los Angeles (and its surrounding region) came of age as a major American art center – and began its emergence into the international art scene.”
 
Please join us for the opening reception of this fall 2006 showcase on Saturday, September 9th, 2006, 6 – 10 pm.  Lawrence Asher Gallery is located at 5820 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, across the street from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and adjacent to the Craft and Folk Art Museum. Free parking is available on Wilshire Blvd. and behind 5858 Wilshire Boulevard, enter on Stanley Ave.  For more information please call 323.935.9100 or visit <http://www.lawrenceasher.com> .

The Artists

“Rhea Carmi - has focused on the human condition in three ongoing parallel series of paintings. Interestingly, a great deal of stylistic variation maintains within each series – more, perhaps, than even maintains between the three. This is partly a result of the three series’ endurance in Carmi’s practice, engaging her concentration for an extended time: over the decade or more she has “fed” the three strains; she has thought and re-thought, worked and re-worked her approach(es) to the intricate act of inventing and elaborating upon visual metaphors. But we can also justify what might seem inconsistent formal language within each series as an expression of the discontinuity that pertains in the human condition… If color thus embodies the impulse of perception for Carmi, line embodies the basic coherence of life – not just the structure, but the pulse of life’s meaning, its logic (however opaque), its spiritual as well as physical skeleton. Her engagement with language and writing makes self-evident Carmi’s dependence on line; but line-based imagery, even free of verbal notation, appears constantly throughout her oeuvre. Streaks, stripes, and the vertical (and horizontal) edges of rectangular forms comprise rhythmic networks whose architectonics are equally capable of fluidity and rigidity.” Peter Frank, 2005

Rhea Carmi was born in Jerusalem in 1942. She served in the Israeli Defense Forces  where she met her husband, Meir, of 44 years. Rhea studied visual art at Tel-Aviv Open University (1974 – 1976) and then attended Ramat-Gan Institute for the Arts (1977 – 1979) Her mentors in the formative years of her career were noted Israeli artists Arie Aroch and Moti Mizrahi . In 1981, Rhea, Meir and their two children left Israel for a new start in Los Angeles. She paints daily, often late into the night, in her attic studio. The past twenty-five years have produced many diverse works shown here and abroad to the delight and approval of her blossoming audience.

Shane Guffogg was born in Los Angeles and raised on an exotic bird farm in the San Joaquin Valley.  In 1989 he traveled through the former Soviet Union, visiting many Soviet artists in their studios and the great Russian Museums. He received his B.F.A. from Cal Arts, and spent a semester in New York where he interned with Gary Stephan.

He relocated to Los Angeles, where he worked as a studio assistant for Ed Ruscha from 1989 to 1995.  His work began exploring the iconography of Ancient, Classical, Renaissance, Modern, and Contemporary cultures, as well as the relationships among the various times and peoples.  During this exploration he found that painting is one of the few art forms that may express what language cannot.  The resulting work contains its own language of sign and symbol, and in its patterning, visual depth, and light, simultaneously seems to refer to emotion, to the human spirit, and to the unseen worlds of Quantum Physics and Super String Theory.
 
Guffogg works in oils on canvas and paper, watercolor, gouache, and pastel on paper, in addition to traditional etchings on zinc plates. The size of the work ranges from the intimacy of 10” x 8” to the monumental 10’ x 8.’  His oils typically have 60-70 layers of translucent colors that have been mixed with a glazing medium in the fashion of the old masters, which causes the paintings to seem illuminated from within. His work has been featured in Museum exhibitions such as the Liquid Los Angeles exhibition last Spring at the Pasadena Museum, the traveling exhibition titled Drawn form the Artists Collection that debuted at Drawing Center in New York then traveled to Hammer Museum in Los Angeles to name a few. His current body of paintings titled Book of Secrets takes the concept of abstraction as a subject matter, using oil paint and glazes to create an infinite space that is punctuated in the middle ground with subconscious signage and patterns that are then obscured and hidden behind a foreground of fragmented light.
 
The artist makes his home in Hollywood with his wife and son.  He is a founding member of Pharmaka and he is also currently working on an on-going collaboration with the Murano Glass Masters, in Venice, Italy.



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