Adam Handler and Peter Opheim: Warriors and Ghosts
December 9th – January 14th 2023
255 Bowery (between Houston & Stanton)
“Warriors and Ghosts“, a joint exhibition by artists Peter Opheim and Adam Handler, features 22 works that challenge the exhibition title. The duo unleash an assortment of ghostly paintings and abstraction-filled warrior-like figures that will captivate and invite viewers into an experience that illuminates a vibrancy of colours and textures.
Adam Handler creates vividly aesthetic works that cultivate beauty by returning to the supposed primal or elementary beginnings, adopting a childlike style, questioning our conceptions and presumptions about our surrounding reality. Adam establishes his paintings on the floor, leaning over the piece; it’s a personal and psychical experience. Within these intimate confines, he feels free to experiment with new concepts. Many of the tiny die-cut works on display represent a purging of his thoughts, passions, insecurities, nightmares and dreams.
Adam’s enchanting figures evoke kawaii, Japan’s culture of cuteness, floating in highly patterned, kaleidoscopic environments. Yet, they also point toward our inner yearning for the raw emotional states of adolescence. Handler’s paintings are ultimately maximalist odes to the imagination, populated with psychedelic gardens and surreal spirits.
Peter Opheim’s oil paintings are windows into a world of fanciful entropy, pushing boundaries by the unconventional and provocative juxtaposition of childlike inspirations with adult thoughts and emotions. Opheim first creates clay figures that are at once glaring and enriched, then translates his characters onto canvasses. His colourful clay figurines embark on his childish fears that are rooted in deformed body parts, unnatural colours, like an archetypal fear that hides behind the innocence of the plot in fairy tales.
“Warriors and Ghosts” aims to exhibit unique techniques that immerse the viewer into a chaotically imaginative world. Both artists create a fantastic realm, populated by whimsical characters that reflect on childish demeanor yet also identifying expressions in the form of solitude, imagination, emotions, and connections.
©2022 Adam Handler, Peter Opheim, GR Gallery
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