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An artist-curated group show redefines contemporary Realism

by Karen Day
on 23 January 2012

The first in a series of artist-curated exhibitions at NYC's Joshua Liner Gallery, "Resolve" gathers together the peers and influencing figures of the highly skilled painter Tony Curanaj. Each of the 25 contemporary artists included in the group show is classically trained and collectively they demonstrate the diversity of Realism.

"Resolve" explores the human experience artists have with a subject, and the truth in their observations. "Great art expresses life," says Curanaj, who is more interested in works that convey a person's sensitivities than those that are focused on the medium, or, as he puts it, "art about art."

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Considered experts of their craft, the artists, which include one photographer, two sculptors and 22 painters, have become completely involved in creating work that reflects their distinct technical prowess. Curanaj aims to show the sincerity and beauty of work made by the hand of a skilled artist. "When you're painting from life, it's like a high-wire net with nothing underneath you," he says. "You could fuck it up at any point."

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The show also makes a different argument about the idea of conceptualism, a term Curanaj believes has been misused for years—especially as it relates to Realism versus abstract art. "There's a misconception that Realism isn't conceptual," he says. "I think Realism is of the highest, utmost conceptual ideas because you're continuously conceptualizing what's in front of you and putting it down as notes and feelings, trying to depict what is life, what is reality." He also feels that the more deeply profound an idea, the more specific the depiction should be. The artist should have a very clear solution for the concept in order to fully get the idea across and relate to the viewer.


The show's title refers to each artist's unwavering creative direction and continuous refinement of their craft. Each notable in their own right, alongside Curanaj, the group includes Graydon Parrish, Jeremy Mann, Jefferson Hayman, Kim Cogan, Lee Misenheimer, Shawn Barber, Kris Kuksi and Jacob A. Pfeiffer.

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On view for just one month, "Resolve" opens at NYC's Joshua Liner Gallery on 26 January and runs through 25 February 2012.

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