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Urban Abstractions

  • Studio 326 326 East 4th Street Royal Oak, MI, 48067 United States (map)

What’s in a zip code? Better yet, does where an artist lives play a role in defining his or her art? Moreover, what distinguishes urban from suburban in a city like Detroit and it's surrounding neighborhoods, and how does that influence an artist?

MOSAIC Productions is proud to present Urban Abstractions, a multi-media show highlighting the influence of city life and culture in Detroit and its neighboring suburbs. The dictionary defines abstraction as “ignoring or hiding details to capture some kind of commonality between different instances.” Urban Abstractions attempts to reveal a commonality between the urban and suburban, while also exposing the varying interpretations of that commonality. This exhibition is a collaboration between artists working in different mediums, from diverse cultural and educational backgrounds.

Painters Mary Rousseaux and Gjon Elezovic for example utilize very distinctive methods in creating their large scale paintings. Fine artist Mary Rousseaux is influenced by "nature and the elemental battle fought for balance in the environment" and looks closely at the decay of organic material for inspiration, "the graceful and beautiful way things decompose and are returned to the earth…reveals hope and regeneration.” In contrast, Gjon Elezovic, an industrial designer by trade, looks to the materials he uses in his daily work for influence: Automotive paints, industrial metals, clear coats and dyes help to create images that project a darkness and mystery. Gjon's Albanian background and the cultural conflicts he has experienced also figure prominently in some of his paintings.

Sculptors Scott Brazeau and Jeff Evarts also have very contrary approaches to their art. Inspiration for Scott Brazeau, a Cranbrook MFA graduate, comes from such diverse objects as children’s art, tribal art and objects from everyday life. I-beams, nuts & bolts, chunks of metal and anything else he finds on the ground or in a forgotten corner of his studio might eventually show up in one of his creations.  Jeff Evarts, on the other hand, utilizes his background creating automotive prototypes and mock submarines to create his unique sculptures. Now a furniture designer, Jeff is influenced by “everything in the world” from nature to architecture. He is also intrigued by the instant fusion that results from the welding process.

Rachel Holland, a BFA graduate of CCS, works as a commercial photographer specializing in photographing people for advertising & editorial clients. Her work for Urban Abstractions represents a response to the current direction of digital media. While digital photography is pushing further towards ever increasing resolution and sharpness, for this show Rachel chose it as a medium to explore the opposite. Taking everyday objects and surfaces and reducing them down to the very basics of shape and color, they transcend their original identities to become suggestions...impulses...dreamscapes. Interpretation of these images is found, therefore, in personal reflection.

Los Minstrels del Diablo are Pete Coe and Jason McCombs, better known as A.D.D. and DJ Dagger. These “multi-media manipulators” are fueled by the desire to experience live performance, combining audio rhythmic sculpture with machine gun paced video presentations. These sick beats are combined with elements of chill and an industrial influence.

Later Event: September 16