San Francisco Exhibit Preview: Among The Missing
Partners and recent collaborators pictured above, Maja Ruznic and Joshua Hagler will be exhibiting paintings together for the first time, in their two-person exhibition entitled Among The Missing. Formerly from the Bay Area, both artists have now re-located to Los Angeles along with droves of others, driven out by exorbitant living costs here in the Bay Area.
Both painters have an affinity for abstracted figuration. In 2013 the pair spent three months traveling through Eastern and Western Europe and Syrian refugee camps in Jordan. They documented this experience with a daily ritual of painting and working on Drift, their collaborative art book due out in June. The exhibition Among the Missing is titled after one of the book’s chapters and includes both a selection of this work as well as new paintings.
Maja and Joshua will be welcomed home for this exhibition which opens in San Francisco. Work from “Drift” (cover, above) will also be on view and the 136-page hardbound limited edition will be available for pre-order.
AMONG THE MISSING at Jack Fischer Gallery, May 3 – May 31, 2014
Opening Reception: Saturday, May 3rd from 4-7pm
For his newest paintings, Joshua Hagler appropriates stills from the 1995 black-and-white western film Dead Man by Jim Jarmusch. Hagler’s references to the film serve as departure points into more abstract visual fields and meditations on the spiritual condition of the “colonist.” Hagler willfully embodies an American stereotype voluntarily taking on a posture of guilt and confusion as a product of colonialism and western expansion. The most obvious shift in Hagler’s work from previous exhibitions is the move into greater abstraction, obscuring subject matter, at times, to the point of non-representation so that something unexpected might be brought to the fore.
A previous Eclectix post on Joshua’s earlier works can be found here.
Maja Ruznic’s new, larger paintings possess the same psychological intimacy and phantasmagoric quality as her earlier works, only this time, Ruznic has embedded her figures into predominantly dark backgrounds and allowed them to appear stain-like, emerging from the darkness. Ruznic draws from her experience of making art with Syrian refugees with her partner and collaborator Joshua Hagler, as well as from her own experiences growing up as a child refugee. Her paintings evoke feelings of discomfort, displacement, and abandonment. The works on paper are sketch-like and complete at once, and evoke the feeling of having woken from dream, recalling a few, small details while the rest recedes into obscurity.
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