— Thru —
“Life of the Party”
June 22nd, 2010 – September 7th, 2010
In this exhibition Alexander Kaletski continues his remarkable series of cardboard paintings with his parade of eye-catching characters. His paintings are composed of the amazing cardboard people that inhabit our contemporary world. They are the individuals of the New York cityscape, the extraordinary person in every crowd that we could easily miss. Kaletski captures their images with the simplest means – lines and hints of color, utilizing the rich discarded materials of the city streets. In addition to the provocative images produced, the viewer is confronted with the amplification of the logo or design- remnant of the original product contained. The cardboard packaging remains intact, scarred, pitted and torn, but artfully reborn.
Alexander Kaletski’s cardboard paintings are a result of his earliest days in the United States. Unable to buy expensive art supplies during his first years in the USA, he wandered the streets of Manhattan, picking up cardboard boxes readily available on the sidewalks. They were free and rich in texture and color. He began documenting on cardboard the people that he encountered in the city. Beginning with the commercial packaging he transforms through the use of line, color and collage, the logos and printed signs, leaving the viewer wondering if the resulting effect was closely planned or a chance.
His minimalist use of popular imagery combined with found objects provides the viewer with a new take on an established image, creating unexpected and striking portraits. The resulting artwork informs, provokes, and amuses.
Alexander Kaletski has exhibited his “Cardboard” works at the Aldrich Museum, the Nassau County Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Minsk as well as numerous galleries both here and abroad.
About the Artist:
Alexander Kaletski studied acting in Moscow from 1965 to 1969 and went on to a highly successful career in stage, television, and film productions. At the same time he held underground concerts of his songs and art shows. In 1975, to escape the danger of arrest and political prosecution, he emigrated to the United States. Arriving to America he gave a nationwide concert tour of his Moscow underground songs, eventually appearing on the Merv Griffin television show. He taught Russian, designed fashion fabrics, illustrated books and held art exhibitions. In 1985 he published his semi-authobiographical novel “Metro” (Viking) which became an international bestseller.
Since 1986 Alexander Kaletski has regularly exhibited his paintings around the world. The prestigious Dillon Gallery represents his art in New York City.