Art Review: Jeph Gurecka – Shiny Bright Souvenir at 31grand, NYC
Yet another exciting show at this reliable bastion of innovation located paradoxically smack-dab in the middle of Conformist Central on the Lower East. Jeph Gurecka’s inspiration for this collection of mixed media, along with 18th century romanticism, is Thomas Cole’s 1840 Voyage of Life series of oils. Several but not all of the pieces here take technology and turn it on its head: acrylic spills and folds as if randomly exposed to flame, resin drips and forms an ugly coagulation. The effect is gripping. My Fathers House is a hollow, offwhite-and-yellow pillar dripping resin, lit from within, a cast Lincoln Log house peering imperiously from the summit down the steep slopes.
Selfish, too blends beads, seashells, resin and flocking to create a portrait of a woman gazing snobbishly down her nose, eyes almost shut. The Voyage of the Crystal Symphony (between the devil and the deep blue sea) strikingly sets a bright, shiny white ocean liner (or a mega-yacht) atop a frosted mess of enameled wax – is it a wave or an iceberg? My Left Nut poses an all-white squirrel (taken from a taxidermy form) molded in white resin, facing its full-color mirrored reflection. Sleeper is the most visceral work in the entire show, an all-white, resin angelic figure (with full-color tattoo on the leg) asleep amidst an ooze that threatens to melt and obliterate anything in its path. Thought-provoking stuff. Through Oct 5 at 31grand Gallery, 143 Ludlow St. between Rivington and Stanton St., Weds-Sun noon-7 PM.
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