This spring, Contemporaneo Asheville presents Materializing Ideas, an exhibition exploring art innovation in Latin America through the work of four artists: Mario Morales-Astudillo, Miguel Grillo, Lorena Morales and Ben Abounassif. “The use of new media and the search for new expressions defines the work of these professional artists, each of whom is beginning to be recognized in museums and cultural institutions around the globe,” says gallery owner Francisco Troconis. “We are very fortunate to have access to their works and be able to exhibit them in Asheville.”
Abounassif is a geometric abstract artist whose work is influenced by the optical and kinetic art of the 20th century, with images that transform in various lights. “Geometry is an unlimited creative resource,” says Abounassif. “I see my art as a way to continually reinvent myself. I create as a way to reflect.”
Morales is a multimedia visual artist who moved from her native Venezuela in 2003. “All of my artwork relates to personal issues of home and cultural identity,” she says. “Some series refer to my homeland where nostalgia plays a main role, focusing on memories of what it was and what it symbolizes. Others are related to my new home where expectations are continuously transformed while in the process of assimilating a new cultural identity.”
Morales uses transparent surfaces and materials to play with perception, including drawing and painting on fluorescent light panels, acetate, polycarbonate sheets, acrylic rods and aluminum sheets. “My focus is the shadow that the piece casts around it, a new reflection of color or a pattern of lines and shapes that surprise the viewer,” she says. “I am in continuous search of materials that would allow me to create an experience that is never static.”
The public is invited to the opening reception for Materializing Ideas, on Friday, April 3, at 5 p.m. at Contemporaneo. In keeping with Contemporaneo’s theme of innovation for the year, the gallery will host similar shows in the summer and fall exploring innovative artists in Europe and Asia.
Contemporaneo Asheville is located at 4 Biltmore Avenue, Asheville. To learn more, visit ContemporaneoAsheville.shop or call 828.253.0879.