While in Milan we popped by to see the latest exhibition of Californian based artist Tavar Zawacki aka Above, whom we previously met in Berlin ( see our coverage here) in 2017.
For twenty years (1996–2016) the artist created and signed all of his artworks with his street artist pseudonym, ‘ABOVE’. In January 2017, he decided to step out of his self-imposed shadow of anonymity and start signing artworks with his real birth name – allowing more freedom of creative exploration, as well as liberation from the arrow icon he has associated himself with. His painting styles with mural works in large scale, as well as his indoor fine art are characterized by the use of hard-edge painting, color field, geometric abstraction, Op art, and Trompe-l’oeil painting styles. Since 2005 the artist displayed his work in galleries and creative institutions around the world.
The solo exhibition ‘Shapeshifting‘ at Wunderkammern Gallery reflects on the concept of metamorphosis intended in a personal and artistic sense, where the artist is testing himself with the use of different types of shapes and colors. The exploration of different forms and their intersections is seen by Tavar Zawacki as a stimulating game and a continuous experimentation, materializing in a visual aesthetic and in a use of techniques that enhance the color. The geometric shapes are combined freely as if they were puzzles. Playing with size, shapes and colours, canvases and sculptures leave the viewer the opportunity to look at his works from multiple angles.
Tavar Zawacki – Shapeshifting
Until 22 December 2018
Via Ausonio 1A, 20123 Milano
Urban Spree Galerie in Berlin is currently showing a solo exhibition by visual artist Tavar Zawacki. entitled “Metamorphosis”, featuring twelve large format works on canvas with his signature hard edge painting style.
Tavar Zawacki (b. 1981), is a Californian born, Berlin-based contemporary artist. Tavar Zawacki under his then street name, ABOVE, has proliferated his artworks in over 100 cities spanning 50 countries around the world with his arrow icon and geometric patterns. He’s been a resident at Urban Spree for the past two years and this show marks a change of direction.
“The intention for the Metamorphosis exhibition was to transition into newer areas of my creativity with a fearless attitude. The past year I decided to slow down, and focus my attention inwards. My priority was to observe previous styles of artworks I had painted, and take them to a higher, more refined level. During this introspective period I was surprised to find that I had many barriers in my creativity that blocked my true visual style from being seen. It was disturbing for me to realize that I’ve been very fearful, and self conscious with my creative process. Metamorphosis is about transformation from one state into a newer dynamic one. With a lot of brutal honesty, and conviction for growth I was able to take inner inventory of what no longer served me. I was able to let go of the fears that were stifling my creative progression. I was prepared for feeling uncomfortable during this metamorphosis. I was learning how to unblock my personal censors, and be valiant in painting the styles of works I’ve previously been too reluctant to paint.
The Metamorphosis exhibition focuses on four different, and distinct styles of painting. Each painting style has it’s own unique personality. As a collective whole these twelve works on canvas best encompass my current interests of painting styles in my career. The restricted black and white designs display my attraction in sharp contrasting Op-Art visual effects. On the contrary, the CMYK designs are full of color achieved from overlapping secondary and tertiary shapes. The painting style of trompe l’oeil has been a highlight of mine during this creative process. The manipulation of shadows, and illusion of depth added a nice dimensional element to Metamorphosis body of work. The fourth, and final painting style examines the relationship between both straight, and curved lines. The intention for this style was to have a balance within each of these defined compositions.
During the designing process of this exhibition I had achieved my goals of stepping out of my creative comfort zone, while pushing forward in these aforementioned styles of my creative interest. Thank you and I hope you enjoy the show.”
Many artists joined the awaited opening with Nick Walker, curator Rolland Henry from VNA magazine, Skewville, Borondo and more.
Tavar Zawacki – Metamorphosis
Until 8 October 2017
Urban Spree Galerie
Revaler Str. 99