Time Kills All Gods
October 22, 2011
through November 19, 2011
NEW YORK, NY (September 20, 2011) — Jonathan LeVine Gallery is proud to present Time Kills All Gods, new works by celebrated Portland-based artist AJ Fosik, in what will be his highly anticipated second solo exhibition at the gallery.
“Fosik’s feral creations take the shape of fantastic beings that communicate a subversive, anti-religious commentary through the depiction of hyperbolized fictional gods. Nameless, assigned no specific meanings or powers, beholden to no formal faith—real or contrived—Fosik’s idols are not meant to contribute to some grand theological narrative of the artist’s design. They are masterfully made beautiful objects that examine the nature of spiritual iconography through an absence of religious discourse. In this way, Fosik points to the power and scope of man’s innate creativity devoid of divine inspiration.” – Lainya Magana, Hi-Fructose Magazine, 2010
As the exhibition title suggests, the artist’s sculptural work explores primal themes. In his words, “I’m fascinated by the need and devotion to the idea of a creator and the many manifestations of that concept. My pieces are totems that are meant to turn the supernatural on its head. They are as man made as every god and just as seductive, but their power lies only in that existential admittance. By subverting the power of spiritual iconography, my work fetishizes the embrace of the unknown and celebrates existence as its own virtue. In reality, we only have each other.”
Fosik explores the powerful medium of language and metaphor to emphasize narrative and interpretation. Using wood and found materials, he creates figural, eclectic and intricately designed three-dimensional works that intrigue and provoke. Fosik’s animal subjects and anthropomorphized beings are built using a complex process in which each form is carefully handcrafted by arranging hundreds of pieces of individually cut and varnished wood, which the artist paints in vibrant colors and patterns. Sharp teeth, claws, and eyes emerge once the creatures are completed—some are constructed as freestanding forms while others are wall-mounted, referencing modern taxidermy practices.
All works in this exhibition are made from 100% locally sourced, sustainably grown Oregon lumber and parts manufactured in the USA. On the subject of his creative process, Fosik says, “every piece undergoes full woodshop gestation. I build an entire wooden skeleton from 2x4’s and framing nails, on top of that goes plywood and gold screws forming muscle and sinew, another layer of wooden flesh over that and finally I skin the beast with luan chips.”
ABOUT THE ARTIST
AJ Fosik was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan. In 2003, he received a BFA in Illustration from Parsons School of Design in New York City. He is currently based in Portland, Oregon. Fosik’s work has been exhibited in galleries across the country including New York, Philadelphia, Miami and San Francisco. He has been featured in publications such as The Wall Street Journal, The Brooklyn Rail and Tokion. In 2011, Fosik was commissioned by Mastodon to create artwork for the cover of their album, The Hunter. The band’s music video featured the artist working in his studio on the piece.