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Deja Vu

Regina Rex
2011-11-01

Hovering like colorful flying saucers, the sculptural paintings of Tatiana Berg are among the first works to engage at “Deja Vu” the current group exhibition at Regina Rex (1717 Troutman #329) These minimal gestures on canvas are stretched around geometric plywood forms, prompting the frame from it’s traditional supporting role toward a more featuring one. This interest in the auxiliary aspects of creative process is not limited to Berg alone. Regina Rex Collective member and show curator Stacie Johnson shares, “These artists seem to have a need for more control. And their input is present in all stages of their work.”

Using an elaborate “staged” tableau (which includes trinkets and ephemera), Frank Trankina renders photo-realistic, trompe l’oeil paintings, nostalgically recalling the late John F. Peto.

Also utilizing trompe l’oeil technique but exactly opposite in result are the radioactive and resonant images of Ivin Ballen. Painting upon a fiberglass cast of what might have originally been sculpey, cardboard and duct tape, Ballen fulfills the curatorial “Deja Vu” descriptor; “made once, and then again.”

The stars of the show however are Lisa Sigal and Selina Trepp. Sigal offers “Hinged Painting (partition)” a minimal work upon door and window screens that asserts both planar primacy and, through shadow and overlap, the illusion of pictorial space. Trepp presents a suite of three self-portraits comprised of painting, photography, and performance; which, in a participatory way, manage to respect each discipline wholly, while wholly transcending them. (through Nov. 20th with gallery readings on Nov. 12th)

—Enrico Gomez
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