Press release –
September 24 – October 31, 2015.
Danziger Gallery is pleased to present the first New York solo exhibition of work by the Los Angeles based artist Farrah Karapetian.
Since 2002, Karapetian has been exploring the form of the photogram creating unique large scale cameraless works that blend performance and photographic process. Working in the studio and using one or more color enlargers Karapetian projects her subjects on to chromogenic paper creating both multi-colored and multi perspective views of the same moment. Using objects and people Karapetian’s pictures are both personal and political with subjects ranging from the relationship of U.S. Armed Forces veterans to their weapons to the effect of casting light through ice.
In her newest series, “Stagecraft”, Karapetian combines the idea of music, performance, and the form of musical instruments to produce luminously colored almost cubistic images. Using both real instruments and a skeletal and translucent drum set fabricated to her specifications, Karapetian alternates abstracted still lives of instruments with near life size photograms of musicians caught at moments of rest before or after the implication of sound.
The front two rooms of the gallery contain 21 differently scaled prints while the back “project room” displays the drum set or “negative” as Karapetian calls it that was used to produce many of the images.
Reviewing this work in the Los Angeles Times, critic Leah Ollman wrote:
Her images speak in questions, equally addressing eye and mind. Photograms in saturated emerald, aqua and gold on matte or metallic paper elicit an immediate how? and what? They are as physically beautiful as they are conceptually ticklish.
Karapetian's overt subject is the musical instrument in performance, but her attention is most acutely fixed on photography's multiplicitous relationship to the real. Her images are at once impressions and traces, inventions and records.
These images are performances of performances, visual stagings, enactments. They bear the photographic pedigree of veracity, vexed as it is. And — they are gorgeous. In those weird, liquid ripples and diaphanous blurs, time and space seem to reveal something of their true, elusive nature.
Karapetian was born in Marin, CA, in 1978. She received a BA from Yale and an MFA from the University of California Los Angeles. Recent exhibitions include the Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena, CA; the Torrance Art Museum in Torrance, CA; the UCR/California Museum of Photography in Riverside, CA; and the Orange County Museum of Art.