20 July 2022 (New Orleans, LA) JONATHAN FERRARA GALLERY is proud to present the gallery premiere solo exhibition, of Ukrainian-American artist Alexander Stolin entitled Memories Project. Based now in Louisiana, Stolin was born in Kiev where he received his BFA from Taras Shevchenko State Art School and MFA from Ukrainian Publishing Institute (Ivan Fedorov School of Book Illustration & Design) before immigrating to the United States at twenty-nine years old. Having worked as a fine artist since, his career path for many years now has led him into scenic art in the film and TV industry. Throughout this time Stolin has never ceased to paint, and this exhibition serves as a reemergence of the artist’s studio practice. Unveiling twenty new and recent works, this suite of paintings explores themes of temporality, family, culture, and self. By piecing together photographs from his life in Ukraine and his wife’s family in the United States, the juxtaposition of cultures posits unified narratives which shape the artist’s own identity. Painted in black and white and sepia tones, the mood of the work employs a feeling of nostalgia and memory.
In support of the artist’s family, friends, and compatriots, 15% of the proceeds the exhibition will be donated to The International Charitable Foundation World With Ukraine. The organization includes nonprofit, profit, public, and private organizations in Ukraine and abroad to provide comprehensive and systemic assistance in rebuilding critical social and economic infrastructure, creating new jobs and stimulating entrepreneurship and host communities, and facilitating the development and recovery of Ukraine.
The Artist Says of His Work...
I divide my life and art into two parts. The first 29 years in my native Kiev Ukraine, where I was born and raised and received my education. In 1992 I immigrated to the United States. In the past 27 years I have lived in Louisiana. It is difficult to say which way my development as an artist would have gone if I had stayed in Ukraine. I do know that the past 29 years have proven to be a very intense and stimulating learning experience. I have had the opportunity to learn a new language, experience new customs and cultures, was able to travel, visited museums and cities that in my youth I read and studied about in art history and literature. I have been able to study the world history from a different perspective.
This windfall of new emotions and experiences has greatly enforced my education and development as an artist. It has brought new ideas and inspiration. I have followed my intuition and feelings in an attempt to develop a story based on my visual language. I have utilized images of old engravings and photographs, have searched for answers while painting. My paintings and drawings are figurative. The images that I adapt and personify as specific characters speak metaphorically about my personal experiences. My recent body of work is a study of a question of autobiographic memory and personhood, emotional development, suffering, journey toward self-knowledge and relationship between past and present. I am searching for images that help me to reconstruct my past as a part of relationships with others. The characters in these paintings help me express feelings, sensibilities and moral being matters.
In the process of working on this series I chose to render paintings in black and white and sepia palette, combination of low-key and chiaroscuro dramatically shadowed unbalanced composition was inspired by Film Noir and German expressionism and coherent with imagery that I borrowed from old photos of my family in Ukraine and my wife Mary Kay’s family here in the US. Some of these images are 150 years old. I assembled images to create poetic expression of the material world and suggest specific ideas, dealing with memories and temporality, personal histories of its characters. The concepts of time and remembrance explored through socially changing framework of world history and where I am trying to express a sense of universal oneness.
The exhibition will be on view from 20 July through 27 August 2022 with an opening reception coinciding with the Arts District of New Orleans’ (ADNO) Fidelity Bank White Linen Night on Saturday, 6 August 2022 from 6 pm - 9 pm.
For more information, press or sales inquiries please contact Gallery Director Matthew Weldon Showman at 504.343.6827 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Please join the conversation with JFG on Facebook (@JonathanFerraraGallery), Twitter (@JFerraraGallery), and Instagram (@JonathanFerraraGallery) via the hashtags: #AlexanderStolin, #JonathanFerraraGallery, and #ArtsDistrictNewOrleans.