Exhibit | Pop Art Shakeup: A Cosmic Genre Fusion

Fabio Coruzzi, “Look Back at Venice Beach”.

Pop Art is a wonderful genre that, through innovative artistic techniques, develops preposterous connections between mass media images and/or objects while approaching them with the finesse of fine art. Artspace Warehouse owner-curator Claudia Deutsch has chosen to feature four celebrated artists in the presently showing exhibition, “Pop Art Shakeup,” each with a very different approach to pop art. Their unique mixed or altered media fizzles together into an exciting, surpirisngly cohesive show. 

Says Deutsch says, “Pop Art is one of the most popular and celebrated forms of art today. The featured artists took this art style to new levels, exploring a new perspective on everyday life. They shook up the art market with bold new combinations, reflecting our changes in society and encouraging a multiplicity of aesthetic and intellectual responses.”

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As Deutsch explains, “Each of these artists examines everyday aspects in our society such as buildings and the people around us and “reassesses” them. For example buildings, otherwise monochrome in color, become bright color blocks in Fabio Corruzzi’s artworks. Ordinary guests at a party in Beverly Hills in the 70s get transformed in layered colors, adding new life to the imagery in Marco Pittori’s photographs.”

Artist Marco Pittori alters or edits images, whether his own or licensed photographs. He adds dimension with an exciting flare that reveals new depths of observation by the viewer. Deutsch further expounds, “He overlays images, adding a feel of motion. In this particular series he uses imagery from Los Angeles paparazzi Brad Elterman from the 70s with a woman’s back seemingly the focus of the image at first sight, but only after closer examination the true depth becomes apparent: all the people in the background who are fixated on this woman.”

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Marco Pittori, “Double Take Orange”.

Another artist of the featured four is Carl Smith, whose internationally known screen prints are individually hand-painted with oils. He also uses a mixture of images. While the Pop Art aspects are clear, with recognizable classic imagery, there is greater perspective and waves of time in a few of the pieces. Says Deutsch, “Carl Smith’s artworks can also be characterized as Urban Art, but his latest series of large “books” on canvas is going much more into the direction of Pop Art.”

The most popular artist in the show is Gary John whose pieces make everyone laugh or smile, and challenges them to decipher the period in the newspaper backdrop. “Gary John’s artworks have all been popular,” says Deutsch. “He knows how to create unique characters in his artworks while also adding a new twist to familiar faces such as Mickey Mouse. People seem to equally love his skulls as well as his hearts, an indication of the wide variety and popularity of recognizable symbols when they are re-purposed.”

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Gary John, “Royal Cat”.

Lastly there is Fabrio Caruzzi, whose art uses printmaking to provide a narrative experience for the viewer. His colorful mixed-media printmaking and acrylic paintings on wood, paper or canvas pull us into a tour of city streets, buildings, and people illuminated in colorful scenes of action.

“The imagery is derived from photos that Fabio takes while traveling and experiencing urban areas,” says Deutsch. “Some might be gritty or run-down places, some monochromatic, others void of life. He combines the photos with printmaking to transfer the imagery onto the canvas or paper and then adds additional elements or changes elements in the image. The new image combinations and color blocks lead to opening our view through the reinterpretation of everyday life.” 

Pop Art Shake Up opens in Los Angeles at Artspace Warehouse through August 28, 2015. Part of the show will continue as an exhibit In New York at the Affordable Art Fair in September.
All images courtesy of the artist and Artspace Warehouse.