NOUAR "CONSUMED BY YOU" in gallery 1
"Consumed by You" expands upon Nouar’s character-based aesthetic. A feast for the eyes in the most literal sense, her highly stylized, crisply rendered figures depict a variety of edible subjects, personified and bursting with life. The artist’s work is reminiscent of—and inspired by—vintage imagery that encompasses post-WWII era animation, packaging and advertising art, particularly of the food industry. Paintings in this show are tied together by theme, and presented in a vibrantly appetizing color palette. The tasty treats wear big smiles and are often accompanied by hand-lettered type.
The messages in Nouar’s paintings parallel the aberrations and accidental humor found in advertising imagery, intertwined with the artist's darker personal narratives. While humorous and inviting on the surface, her subjects convey multiple levels of meaning and connotation. Anthropomorphized and sometimes ambiguous in nature, Nouar’s characters invite the viewer to become engaged in their off-kilter world. In the artist’s own words: “developing mascots with happy cartoon faces on merchandise encourages consumers to feel comfortable... I have always been completely fascinated by our massive consumer culture and often feel everything around us is a commercial, constantly manipulating us into desiring things we don’t really have a need for, or shouldn’t want in the first place.”
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Nouar was born in Tehran, Iran, during the height of the nation’s political turmoil of the early 1980's. Her family narrowly fled the country, migrating to Germany first, before ending up in the United States. Nouar’s father was an artist and her mother was a schoolteacher, both parents nurtured their daughter’s interest in the arts, which developed at an early age.In 2004, Nouar graduated from Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California. She has since worked in many artistic facets, including work as a background painter in the television animation industry, and as a freelance illustrator. As a painter, her love of animation, food and vintage ephemera, coupled with darker personal narratives continually act as an inspiration for her work.
ANTHONY AUSGANG "Abstract Fables" in gallery 2
Back again to Copro Gallery, Ausgang presents "Abstract Fables". The direct storyline in Ausgang’s earlier work has been replaced with an oblique description of events and abstract visual puzzles. These new paintings depict a multi faceted narrative that invites the viewers’ scrutiny and debate. Since the “meaning” of the painting is to be defined by its audience, a story develops that is unspecified by the artist. Released from the tyranny of a linear narrative Ausgang is able to expand the visual quotient of his paintings and let his psychedelic cats roam freely.
Ausgang's use of cartoon characters is an attempt to explain the human condition, the unheralded heroics of just staying alive, without resorting to the overt, hammer on the head use of we, the people. In the ritual dances of Bali, many types of animal deities are represented by actors wearing stylized masks; anthropomorphic gods, such as cats, were prime time players in ancient Egyptian polytheism. The adulation that certain cartoon characters get in contemporary Western culture is just the most modern version of this, and they get worshipped at megastores.
I consider the development of cartoon animals the same way that I regard human evolution; it was the cats that first crawled out of the primordial ink and morphed themselves erect on hind legs. As dogs stayed stubbornly down on all fours, cats such as Felix began to openly explore the possibilities of the cartoon universe. The ripped movie palace audiences of the '30s really dug it; later the first Keane-eyed TV generation got hip and now we have our chance.
"BonApetite" group art exhibition in gallery 3
Curated by Nouar, "BonApetite" presents an ecclectic collection of small paintings from many different artists all pertaining to food. Enjoy your meal!
Artists: Molly Crabapple, John Purlia, Dark Vomit, JoKa, Scott Hove, Lang Leav, Bad Otis Link, Tim Gore, Dan Goodsell, David Eppen, Miss Mindy, David Russell Talbott, Misha, Dale Sizer, Richard Frost, Squeezebox Sam, James P. Scott, & more