Pop Hybrids and Cinematic Visions at Kenneth Paul Lesko Gallery
Troy Gua [Seattle, WA]
Pop Hybrids II
May 20 – July 23, 2016
Troy Gua is an artist whose work investigates identity, celebrity and popular culture. His Pop Hybrid series is a unique, superimposition of iconic faces and imagery, instantly recognizable on their own, but dissolved into a kind of Rorschach inkblot puzzle when merged—each viewer seeing something different, making his or her own subjective associations. The resulting hybrid image is a new and separate identity, functioning as irony and satire; as metaphor and social commentary.
Each piece has its own narrative, whether humorous, poignant or intellectual. In “Übermensch,” Gua combines Friedrich Nietzsche with the comic book hero, Superman, drawing a contrast between Nietzsche’s Superman, and his nihilistic rejection of traditional values, and the Kryptonian champion of Truth, Justice and the American Way.
In “The Surrealists,” Gua creates a superimposition of the Surrealist filmmakers, David Lynch and Jean Cocteau. With both men working as filmmakers, painters, sculptors and writers, the parallels are striking. Cocteau’s influence on Lynch is referenced in the chevron pattern in the background—the same pattern on the floor that marks the entryway to the underworld in Cocteau’s films Orpheus (1950) and Testament of Orpheus (1960). It’s no coincidence that Lynch used the same pattern on the floor in the lobby for Eraserhead (1977) and more famously, in the White and Black Lodges seen in Twin Peaks(1990-1991) and Fire Walk With Me (1992).
Merging identity and interlayered shapes and contours, combined with a masterful sense of color, Gua’s resin-coated compositions appear as colorful works of glass. The slick, clean presentation is meant to be reflective—and reflected upon.
International Group Exhibition
September 16th, 2016 – November 12th, 2016
A house is borne away by a tornado, a Knight plays chess with Death, a B-52 Bomber Pilot rides a nuclear bomb like a bucking bronco to oblivion; these captured moments have a distinctive means of imprinting themselves on our memories, catching in our filters and germinating. An artist’s mind often acts as a lens, refocusing and projecting these elements into new creations, or new translations embedded with the power of their cinematic progenitors.
Last year we continued our ongoing series of exhibitions designed around cinema as a translated medium. The exhibition, Cinema 06, surpassed our expectations in terms of quality and diversity of the submissions. It was exciting to see how various artists incorporated cinema into their work, whether referencing specific films, genres or cinematic process itself. After the final selections were made, the exhibition consisted of work by 17 artists from 8 cities in 3 countries, and was very well received by the thousands who viewed the work in the gallery and online. This year, we continue with Cinema 07.
Troy Gua: Pop Hybrids II: May 20 – July 9, 2016
Cinema 07: An Exhibition of Cinema Inspired Art: September 16 – November 12, 2016
Kenneth Paul Lesko Gallery
1305 West 80th Street
Cleveland, Ohio 44102
Caption for image should read as follows:
Troy Gua | “Changes One” David Bowie at 4 life stages | “Übermensch”Friedrich Nietzsche + Superman | “The Surrealists” David Lynch + Jean Cocteau