January 28 – March 19, 2016
Open Reception: Friday, February 5, 2016, 5pm
The core of the exhibition consists of six photographs that are part of a larger project that Valenzuela completed in 2014 titled Hedonic Reversal. The monochromatic photographs of Hedonic Reversal present images of urban decay and ruins that have been created in the artist’s studio. By divorcing the imagery from the social conditions that are typically attendant to “beautiful ruins” photography, Valenzuela questions how the viewer’s aesthetic response is altered by the absence of poverty and suffering.
The Hedonic Reversal works capture a complex amalgamation of materials and aesthetic choices. Valenzuela’s photographic process is equally complex. Each image is the result of multiple stages of photographing and re-photographing in the artist’s studio. In this way, Valenzuela alludes to the passage of time and the forces of production and destruction.
Video is also an important media for Valenzuela. For Maria TV (2014; funded by 4Culture and the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture), Valenzuela brought Spanish-speaking female immigrants together with an acting coach for a day of filmed theater, reconstructing monologues from Telemundo soap operas interwoven with personal histories. The video emphasizes how rarely working-class women are featured, or featured realistically, in the media.
Valenzuela was born in Chile and completed an MFA at the University of Washington in 2012. Recent one-man exhibitions include shows at Envoy Enterprises in New York City, Upfor in Portland, OR, and the Frye Art Museum in Seattle, WA. His work has been included in numerous group exhibitions at institutions, including: the CUE Foundation in New York City, Diverse Works in Houston, TX, and MOCA, North Miami, FL. This is Valenzuela’s first solo exhibition at Steven Zevitas Gallery.
There will be an opening reception on Friday, February 5th from 5:00 – 8:00 PM. For additional information, please contact Steven Zevitas at 617.778.5265 (ext. 22). Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 11AM – 5 PM.