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Monday, January 14, 2013

Christian Berman show opens at Ulla Surland in Fairfield Saturday

Ulla Surland Gallery Eleven
11 Unquowa Rd., Fairfield, (203) 259-1572
Christian Berman: Recent Works
Jan. 19—Feb. 16, 2013.
Opening Reception: Sat., Jan. 19, 6—8 p.m.

Press release from the Ulla Surland Gallery

Christian Berman was born in Mexico and raised in Westport, Connecticut. Berman attended Duke University where he received a BA in International Comparative Studies. He went on to receive a masters degree in Landscape Architecture from Rhode Island School of Design. He lives in Greenpoint, Brooklyn and has a working studio in the American Fabrics Arts building in Bridgeport, Connecticut as well as in the Active Space in Bushwick, Brooklyn.

Berman spent his youth connecting to the natural world while exploring the woods in New England. He was particularly drawn to birds and their visual diversity of color, patterns, textures and forms. His paintings, fantastic combinations of abstract imagery, realist elements, computer graphics and stenciled patterns, strongly reflect these early influences. He cuts, pours, paints and glues imagery on to large canvases creating intelligent works with exquisite visual impact and powerful emotional resonance. He creates diptychs and triptychs, often fairly small, telling stories containing undertones of mystery, spirituality and his perceptions of reality. In addition to his experiences of nature, his works are influenced by the visual iconography of his Mexican roots, his love of the Impressionists, the abstract expressionists, the surrealists and of Eastern artists such as Japanese painter Hiroshige. The resulting paintings are a fiercely personal, unique and undogmatic expression of this young and gifted artist's efforts to understand and express the world of his experience.

Christian Berman: "Truth or Consequences"

The works being shown in this exhibition were created over the past year and a half. When asked to explain this body of work, Mr. Berman states the following: "A Buddhist proverb asks, 'How can I die if I was never born?' The notion of time having flexibility, and existing as more than a linear progression, is a driving force in my work. My paintings are improvisational constructions of imagined places, often reminiscent of digital worlds. I endeavor to create a conversation between the individual panels of each triptych and with the history of painting as a whole. In my larger works, 18th century etchings are collaged into geometric, often computer-drawn objects. The abstract form thus encapsulates and simplifies the convoluted history of human invention. The birds in the paintings are intermediaries, able to transcend the boundaries between past and future, the real and the imagined, the Eastern and the Western, the digital and the concrete."

The show will be on view from Jan. 19 through Feb. 16. There will be an opening reception this Sat., Jan. 19, from 6—8 p.m.

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