Self-taught artist Alexander Reisfar’s eerie paintings, both frightening and beautiful, are inhabited by intricately rendered creatures and dark surrealist undertones. The Portland, Oregon-based artist is able to navigate esoteric, political, and sexual themes within the dark iconography depicted in his paintings. “Creating uniquely macabre scenes in dystopian settings, his work incorporates elements of nature, death, and humanity in a way that depicts both man’s ruin as well as the tiniest glimmer of hope for mankind, painting an intricate and cautionary tale. Gory, fearful, and at times, downright grotesque, Reisfar’s work is a commentary on society. Playing with themes that are both anti-colonialism as well as anti-war, his portrayal of humans is often melded with morbid elements like decay and death… Somber, macabre, and undoubtedly cautionary, his work is absolutely stunning.” - Alex Wikoff
Alexander has lended his brush to many bands over the years, his album covers include Arch Enemy, Sabbath Assembly, Lungs, and Silver Talon. Most recently Opeth and Mastadon used his work An Archer for an Anthem, featured in this exhibition, to promote their 2021 tour. Reisfar was the artist in residence at the John Natsoulas Gallery in 2012, where he became a member of the Davis Mural Team. The artist’s murals can be found in Davis CA, Oakland CA, and Portland OR. His paintings, both brooding and elegant, have been featured across the U.S. and can be found in numerous collections and outsider exhibitions around the world.
Mark Porter was born in Warwick, Rhode Island, but is based in Brooklyn, where he has established a studio that merges sculpture, installation, and innovative construction techniques across mediums. Trained in classical sculpture, Mark worked as Boaz Vaadia’s assistant, finding a great affinity in the artist’s use of space and the natural environment in his sculptures.
While Mark does not deliberately court controversy, his combination of the beautiful and the disturbing rendered with a precise technique and modern mindset can lead the casual observer to mistake him for a provocateur. The greater narrative in this work, however, relates to an understanding of the truth that is revealed in the interaction between materials, form, and gesture. In this revelation, strength may be cast in disposable plastics while fragile subtle elements are embodied in steel.