The Video Taping of Alan Ket :: How a graffiti vet beat the system that almost beat him
By Michael Vazquez Photography by KET
“He is not a Man” opens with a photomontage and a live narration about a respectable man who grew up in the farms of Ukraine. This man became a hero and was rewarded because he courageously rescued the Czar’s children from being massacred by a wolf. The ramification of these events three generations ago is revealed to the audience as Bryan Zanisnik’s autobiographical docudrama performance unfolds on stage.
In the next scene, the drums crescendoed, audibly introducing the boxing referee, and two fighters—a man and a wolf. Let’s get ready to rumble! In a smoke filled room and referee’s spit in the ring, fists flew, trainers cursed, audience screamed and waved American flags. Both fighters fought for their lives. What a match! The lights dim, the wolf walks away from the ring, and the audience chants, “he’s not a man”.
The underlying elements of this performance strongly resonate, heroism, masculinity, immigration, and class distinction. The ambiguity lies in the oscillation of the past and reflection of the present. History does not change, but history changes us. Bryan Zanisnik’s piece, “He is not a Man” invites the audience to have courage and seek out the past in an effort to demystify genealogical legends. This undertaking leads to discovering deeper layers of identity.
“He is not a Man” is a performance piece by Bryan Zanisnik. The performers include Bryan Zanisnik as the boxer, Dave Suter as the wolf, Ryan Saylor as the referee, and Eric Winkler and Randall Miller as trainers. Bob Carlton hails from Philadelphia and provided the music. The performance was approximately 20 minutes. The video piece edited with the photomontage was on MiniDV format.
Bryan Zanisnik is from New Jersey and currently lives in Brooklyn, NY. He is currently enrolled in MFA Program at Hunter College. Some of the most recent places he has exhibited are Priska C. Juschka Fine Art, Moment Art, Art Omi (summer residency), Jersey City Museum, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art.
If you are intrigued, please visit his website and drop him a line about the next tour date of the match. Please visit www.zanisnik.com.
Zanisnik's performance was organized by "boundLES", a collaborative exhibition project that brings together commercial galleries, nonprofit arts institutions and artists in celebration of the rich creative spirit of the Lower East Side. Some of the longest-running creative centers in the community will host work by contemporary artists represented by galleries that have opened in the area over the last five years. boundLES is curated by Jane Kim (Director, Thrust Projects) and Cecilia Alemani (independent critic and curator), with the assistance of Elena Linares-Low and Padma Rajendran.
Exhibition dates: November 27, 2007 – January 13, 2007
(Bryan Zanisnik's performance has come to a close - December 2-3, 2007)
Please visit www.boundles.net for more information about other programs and events in the Lower East Side.
WORKS BY CHRIS GEORGALAS
ART OPENING - THURSDAY OCTOBER 11th 7-9pm
Mazi's at 112 Suffolk Street (btwn. Delancey and Rivington)
"Kong", 2007, oil pastel, acrylic on canvas and buoy, 5.5 ft. x 4 ft.
Brooklyn Art Project member Joyce Manalo runs NYC based, ArtForward, an organization committed to curating work from some of the most fascinating new artists to come onto the scene. Joyce is currently working with Arthur Christopher Georgalas, who CBGB's 313 Gallery describes as artist who "has been influenced by illustration, comic books, graffiti art and pop imagery" the gallery goes on to say that Georgalas represents the "next progression of a Duchampian ready-made aesthetic suited and amended for contemporary art."
With our curiosity sufficiently piqued, we caught up with Joyce to fill us in on this intriguing artist, his interest in melding sculpture and paintings and his current show at Mazi's at 112 Suffolk Street in NYC's Lower East Side, that runs through October 31st.
BROOKLYN ART PROJECT (BAP):
Can you tell us a bit more about Arthur Christopher Georgalas?
JOYCE MANALO (JM): Chris is a mellow guy living in Williamsburg. He's a hands-on person, he currently works in Red Hook at a furniture hardware. He's quite prolific; in the span of two days that I haven't seen him, he executed works on 3 big canvases. In addition to cranking out works, he is quite detached from possessing them himself, because it's more important for him that others personally and privately enjoy his work.
BAP: How would you describe his work?
JM: His work is both multi-dimensional in medium and nostalgic references. His canvas is made up of attentively chosen “found objects”. The process of drawing, painting, sculpture and collage are all apparent in his works. The recurring subject of his pieces play on the audience’s recollection of virility in classical movies, art history, and childhood.
BAP: Where does he find his inspirations?
JM: Outside--the industrial landscape and debris of nyc and the bucolic detritus of upstate new york. He is visually influenced by 50s illustrations, comics and japanese anime and toys. The artists that inspire his work are Jean-Michel Basquiat, John Chamberlain, Marcel Duchamp, George Segal, Robert Gober, Tadeus Kantor, Henri Matisse, Claes Oldenburg, Andy Warhol, and Bill Woodrow.
BAP: What would people be surprised to know about Christopher?
JM: That he actually goes by his middle name Chris and not Arthur which is his first name. Usually first names are less embarrassing than middle names. He likes to also drink jack and coke, which is too sweet for most.
BAP: Where can people see Christopher's work in NYC and online?
JM: His work can be seen at Mazi's until the end of October, and he welcomes studio visits in Williamsburg. Since he just finished his new works this October, his website www.georgalas.net is still pending updates, but you can see the works of his solo show at www.art-forward.com/curatorial.
BAP: What is ArtForward
JM: ArtForward focuses on unconventional collaborations with the art community and business ventures outside the visual arts, to elevate emerging artists and their works to the forefront. It is deeply rooted in working with local art councils, artist studios, alternative spaces, galleries, auction houses and contemporary museums to widen the channels for exhibition opportunities and cooperative projects in tandem with dispersing appreciation in the arts.
Tags: Andy Warhol, art-forward.com, artist, Bill Woodrow, brooklyn art project, brooklynartproject.com, Chris Georgalas, Claes Oldenburg, George Segal, Henri Matisse, Jean-Michel Basquiat, John Chamberlain, lower east side, manalo, Marcel Duchamp, mazis, painter, Robert Gober, sculptor, Tadeus Kantor
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