Mixografia is pleased to announce Phases, an exhibition that highlights the expansive role of the self as subject, and considers the function of portraiture as all-encompassing, transitory and a product of its time. The exhibition includes artworks by 20 artists spanning 45 years of collaboration with Mixografia, many of which have not been exhibited publicly since their original production. There will be an opening reception at 1419 East Adams Blvd. on Saturday, January 26th, 2019 from 4:00PM – 6:00PM.
The exhibition begins with lithographs created in collaboration with Mixografia between 1973 and 1978. Rodolfo Morales depicts a portrait of a portrait in his 1975 print Obra IV – Couple. It is a domestic scene that captures the ephemera of a home, with an emphasis placed on a hanging portrait of two embracing figures. In Espejo, Luis Filcer’s silhouetted subject kneels in shadow before a mirror, to reveal the figure’s contrarily illuminated portrait. The reflection appears to be emitting a light that does not exist elsewhere in the room. Filcer and Morales both dwell on pairings; whereas Morales suggests home and companionship, Filcer depicts an atmosphere of solitude, duality, and self-awareness.
The exhibition continues with sculptures and editions from 1990-2004. The central subject of Larry Rivers’ Blue Collar Holiday is an American industrial worker in repose. Fragmented in a tangle of smoke, rebar, and construction beams, the sculptural collage is a portrait of the worker’s complete immersion into his work, elements of which occupy his entire surrounding environment. However, his casual clothing and relaxed posture suggest calmness in spite of an otherwise tiresome and chaotic life. Also on view is George Segal’s 1996 sculpture Woman Sitting on Bed. As the title suggests, the sculpture’s subject sits at the edge of an unmade bed in a bare room. Though the two open walls grant a clear view into the scene, the subject looks away with a fixed gaze on the room’s sole window. A light shines through the window, casting her shadow across the bed.
The exhibition concludes with editions that consider portraiture in a contemporary context. Andrés Nagel’s Cactus monoprints from 1992 depict a magazine opened flat to reveal its front and back covers. One side of the composition depicts a full-page advertisement and the other half shows a headshot underneath the magazine’s title “Vanity Fair”; Nagel applies colors to each print with gestural strokes, emphasizing a handmade quality that runs contrary to the reproducibility associated with printed media. Alex Israel’s Self-Portrait suite from 2017 considers the idea of the self-portrait as a logo of sorts, alluding to the filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock’s iconic profile portrait seen at the beginning of his films. Israel’s unmistakable likeness is represented as a simplified distillation of defining features. The crisp gradients resemble the saturated colors of Southern California sunsets, as idealized in Hollywood films.
The portrayal of subjects and the environments they occupy often carries meaning beyond mere representation. Whether it’s a snapshot of a moment, social commentary, or simply continuing in an art historical lineage, portraiture as a subject has the ability to offer greater insight into its context.
The exhibition includes artworks by John Baldessari, Leonora Carrington, Francisco Corzas, Luis Filcer, Robert Graham, Alex Israel, Guillermo Meza, Rodolfo Morales, Andres Nagel, Mimmo Paladino, Ed Paschke, Fanny Rabel, Larry Rivers, Fritz Scholder, George Segal, Rufino Tamayo, Manolo Valdes, and Francisco Zuniga. Phases will remain on view through Saturday, March 9th, 2019.