Allison Schulnik’s paintings like to explore the underbelly of urban life in her latest show entitled “Home for Hobo,” of new paintings sculpture and video at Mark Moore Gallery in Santa Monica, California. Through a character called the Hobo, her works asks the viewer to offer both sympathy and yes, understanding for those that are rejected and marginalized. Hobo is an alter ego to the artist. The artist visually portrays Hobo with a huge mane of hair and all but unrecognizable with big eyes and a hand ready to waive at the viewer. The artist states that “Home for Hobo finds our protagonist in the vulnerable state of longing. Allowing his mind to clumsily, dangerously meander through an unattainable existence. However, for the deprived and the depraved, even the most glowing of fantasies are still dotted with crusting scabs. Some say the hobo knows us better than we know ourselves. Sometimes it is this very sense that betrays and haunts him”.
Her paintings stylistically are ripe with texture. Expressionistic in their composition, the canvas is thick with paint. The paint almost comes off the surface with cake-like texture. The paintings and works are beautiful. Schulnik shows versatility in the way she goes from painting her alter ego Hobo to other subjects such as monkeys, possums, or figures like Klaus (Kinsky) or Jimmy (Stewart) as a clown. The works asks the viewer to relate to the subject on an emotional level with sympathy and look towards those on the margins with compassion. Her sculptures also convey an emotional connection with her audience. Sculnik’s two sculptures of a raccoon and possum illustrate this perfectly. The sculpture of a possum especially interesting, which shows it eating from a bowl of food. This relates to her parents adapting a possum, where they allow it inside their house to eat. Schulnik is a wonderful artist whose art seek to explore a world where people would like to forget existed. They ask us the viewer to enjoy this world not with cynical or patronizing glances, but with a sense of wonder and acceptance. This is an excellent show and a definite must see. It is a great beginning to a new year.
Home for Hobo
Opening Reception: Saturday, January 9, 5 – 7p
On View January 9 – February 6
Mark Moore Gallery
2525 Michigan Ave., A1
Santa Monica, CA 90404
T. 310.453.3031 F. 310.453.3831
Tues-Sat, 11a – 6p
Sunday, January 17, 2010
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