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For exhibition 48 we are pleased to be showing for the third time Los Angeles-based painter Jacob Melchi, six pieces from his recent series dealing with parallel and non-parallel configurations. These works represent a step up in scale for Melchi, who has previously worked almost exclusively in portrait size. Otis graduate Melchi paints in oil on linen and practices a sensate form of constructivism, drawing on references from the outside world and his own internalized formal impulses. In a review of Melchi's last show here, Kenneth Baker compared him to painters as disparate as David Hockney and Raoul De Keyser, and wrote that his work, "...makes an ingratiating impression at a distance. But only a close look reveals how much Melchi cares about detail. Avoiding preciousness, he makes the tooth of his coarse linen working surface an active ingredient in the work, rather than an inert platform." Melchi's art has been shown previously at institutions such as Santa Monica's California Heritage Museum, Center for Contemporary Art in Sacramento, Torrance Art Museum, Nordic Institute for Contemporary Art in Helsinki, and Netherlands Media Art Institute in Amsterdam. A 44-page full color catalog with commentary by Gladys-Katherina Hernando accompanies the exhibition.



For exhibition 48 we are pleased to be previewing four representative photographs from Susan Mikula's new series, Picture Book. These works, large, framed, pigment prints, continue the tricks of scale of Mikula's previously exhibited u.X series, but with a shift in psychology. Whereas u.X used toy soldiers to peel back the ego's guise of militarism, Picture Book employs a repertoire of archetypes more associated with the subconscious Id, the self as a house, a rabbit and a female figure juxtaposed to one another against a shifting horizon. With this repertoire, Mikula explore the tethers of identity, and a balance of power as the protagonist prevails in a foundation-less world. Mikula is a master of narrative sub-texts. With her previous two cycles, American Bond and Thrill Show, she charted with a journalistic compassion the quandary of American masculinity. Picture Book addresses the big questions, ranging in tone from wondrous curiosity to quiet terror, and in the stretch, Mikula casts her intentional focus on the individual's place in the cosmos. Her imagery plays with relative scale, casting the contemporary dilemma against a larger, historical and perennial poignancy. This is Mikula's 5th solo exhibition with us.Two monograph publications, Mikula's American Bond and u.X, are available from the gallery.