Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Irina Koukhanova: Panoptic Landscape

Irina Koukhanova | The Lookout
Irina Koukhanova | The Lookout

Irina Kouhanova's Panoptic Landscape presents as a boldly graphic exhibit at first blush. The prints are stark in black, red and grey, the cast tiles are starkly simple, and the sculptures are strong punctuations.

The imagery pays tribute to solitary, wild hybrid man-bird figures. In some, the indication of man-made structures dominates. But there is a dystopian theme that runs through the landscapes and figures that populate it.

I like this singular approach to the discipline of printing. Ms. Kouhanova produced prints that were a combination of a couple of blocks, with variations in color and sequence.

Several sculptural works are included in the exhibit, many of which are fully integrated and free-standing. These incorporated multiple materials, with painted wood supporting smal cast bronzes. The imagery was consistent with the graphic themes in the prints.

Irina Kouhanova | Pomegranate I
Irina Kouhanova | Pomegranate I

There is one piece in the exhibit that really resonated with me. Pomegranate I is small, at about 16" in height (with the base, it's 22"). It has delicate patinas in green and red with bronze softly shimmering through. The light play along its twined and curved surfaces is restless and liquid, catching in the seeds of the pomegranate halves. It got in behind my eyes and pulled my stomach though my throat. It brought to mind all those things that I had conquered and the rest that remain.

Panoptic Landscape is a very strong show, and I would highly recommend taking a trip to BoxHeart to see it. The exhibit is open through May 16.

2014 Artist of the Year: Irina Kouhanova
Panoptic Landscape (Exhibit images)
On exhibit from March 18th through May 16th, 2014
BoxHeart Gallery

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