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Michael Zelehoski

Everyday objects flattened into 2-D art question the relationship between form and function

by Evan Orensten in Culture on 26 May 2010

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With the eye of sculptor, Michael Zelehoski breaks down and reassembles everyday objects into two-dimensional works—like pieces of a puzzle—that challenge perspective. His mixed-media picture planes of chairs, ladders and tables incorporate recognizable remnants of these items, creating eerie spatial illusions of structure.

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"In the collapse of the object I explore the duality between three-dimensional reality and two-dimensional pictorial space and try to push the continuum of representational art to a logical extreme," Zelehoski states on his website. "A chair, for example, remains a chair, formally and materially, even as its function is negated." A peek at the back of one of his pieces (below) shows just how little the artist alters his source material to pose these questions.

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Born in Concord, MA, Zelehoski attended Simon's Rock College of Bard, graduating with a degree in fine art from Finis Terrae University in Santiago, Chile. There, he apprenticed for sculptor Felix Maruenda, helping to complete the "Monumento al Trabajador Voluntario" after Maruendar's death.

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Zelehoski returned to the United States four years ago, turning his focus from sculpture to investigating the quandary of artistic representation and the subjects represented. He also carves and burns wood in his figurative illustrations.

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Currently, Zelehoski is preparing for "Collection," an upcoming group exhibition at the Christina Ray gallery. He's also at work on new pieces for a solo show at Christina Ray slated for September, flattening a picnic table and two police barricades into two-dimensional pieces. (See first two images above, and check out a few others in the gallery below.)

"Collection" runs from 10-27 June 2010.

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