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Allegories - opening

Sunday, January 14, 2-5pm
Cammarata Studio, Alameda 6
Free

Allegories - opening

by Kathleen Cammarata

“The task of art is not to render things as they visibly are, but to call forth an unseen spirit.”
Alfred Stieglitz

The word allegory comes from the latinization of Greek meaning “veiled language.” An allegory is a metaphor whose vehicle may be a character, a place, or an event representing real life issues. Allegory has occurred widely throughout history in all forms of art because it can illustrate complex ideas in ways that are comprehensible or striking to its viewers. Annie Evans and Kathleen Cammarata use allegory in their sculptures and drawings respectively.

Evans sculpts in clay with the addition of animal horns, bones, and skulls. In the piece “Wings You Cannot See” two figures sit in a wooden trough representing a boat. The front figure is a child with a hand on her chin and the back figure is a woman with a hand reaching for the child. The allegorical question is what is the relationship between the figures? Why are the wings invisible? Are they traveling and if so where? Is the child pondering the future?

In the piece “How Severe the Moon” a solo figure wearing a horned skull sits contemplating in a shallow blue boat. The skull appears to stare at the viewer while the figure gazes off into space. Her body position of an outstretched left leg, a bent right leg, and crossed arms indicate the boat is drifting slowly. There is no effort here just a passage of time. With a melancholic expression on her face is she staring at the moon? Traditionally the skull in vanitas paintings represented death. What does the position of this skull mean and is this a metaphor about contemplating one’s end? How does the title of the work dovetail with the disparate elements of the work? Evan’s sculptures raise questions rather than provide answers.

Cammarata’s figure drawings employ the flower as allegory. Female nudes sit, stand, or squat as flowers cascade down their torsos, bloom on their backs, or hang over their shoulders. In a series of two heads in profile facing each other, flowers grow out of their slightly open mouths. The title of the series is “We Speak the Same Language.” To Cammarata the meaning of flowers is profound. Throughout history flowers have been used to honor weddings, funerals, Day of the Dead, and many more grave occasions. In the drawings the flowers are compressed into a force. Though delicately drawn they are not fragile.

This exhibition can be seen on Sunday January 14th from 2 to 5 pm at Alameda #6 Colonia San Antonio ( GPS please use #5) or by appointment: katcammarata@gmail.com

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