Spreading fear and mayhem in the visual arts.

Ray Caesar's "A Dangerous Inclination" at Corey Helford Gallery, Culver City

by Suzanne on October 13th, 2011


Self Examination by Ray Caesar, edition of 20, ultrachrome ink on paper, 30" x 30" (unframed) - click to enlarge

I know I haven't really written that much about Ray Caesar in a while but there is now a fantastic reason to rectify that situation and it's called Self Examination (c.f. image above).

As you all know, I have followed Ray's work since the very early days and after a while, his love for very particular motives emerged quite clearly.

While I found that the vast majority of art blogs, critics and curators obsessed over the actual breathtakingly Victorian imagery per se, you could almost say that I soon reached a level of certain happy visual saturation and as a result and after I first saw one of his pieces in real life, my curiosity got drawn to a completely different aspect of his work: The minute details of insect life, veins, skin translucency, drapery and other insanely small things not really visible on the interwebs. It's like his work truly revealed itself in all the intricate little microcosms it was really made of.

At the same time, I wasn't sure in what direction his work and therefore my appreciation of it would drift after I had gotten so very and literally close to the subject matter and I was somewhat anxious what to expect next - particularly after 2008 having been such an insanely prolific and technically highly diverse and experimental year for him. Since then, I have been waiting while Ray has been searching in his box, it seems:

"I look inside myself and see very difficult and wonderful memories I have forgotten; things I tucked away in a secret box 45 years ago. I am now sitting by that box and opening up what’s inside. [This exhibition] communicates what I am finding.”

(Press release to A Dangerous Inclination)

And well, today, I received a preview for Ray's new show entitled A Dangerous Inclination at Corey Helford that opens October 20 and I am glad to say that my doubts were unfounded and that I have fallen in love with the boldness, the simplicity (well, on a Caesaresque scale...), the much more anatomically grown-up femme fatale nature of his new piece Self Examination and I truly believe it to be his most exciting and enticing work in years.

I had a secret love affair with those underpants since his Blessed (2006), and fucking hell, I never expected them to make such a smoking hot comeback. So thanks, Ray.

The full preview isn't online yet but there will be some 30 pieces on show including classics and rare editions so keep your eyes peeled. I don't know why they always say that - it's kinda gross.

Details for the show are below.


Little Miss Sardonicus by Ray Caesar, 1 of 1, ultrachrome ink on paper, acrylic & varnish on panel, 6" x 6" (unframed) - click to enlarge

Opening reception: Saturday, October 22, 2011, 7 - 10 PM

On show: Oct 22 - Nov 12, 2011

Address: Corey Helford Gallery, 8522 Washingto Boulevard, Culver City, CA 90232, USA, tel: 310-287-2340

Hours: Tue - Sat: 12 - 6 PM

Press release

Artist's website

WurzelForum discussion

Harma Heikens, Ray Caesar et al. at Corey Helford, Culver City

by Suzanne on January 20th, 2011


Death and a nine-year-old by Harma Heikens, mixed media, 2008 - click to enlarge

And... yet another show announcement for the Culver City area and it seems that Ray Caesar (previously featured here, here, here, here, here, here and everywhere) is a busy man this month.

In the Nursery is a "contemporary interpretation of classic American nursery art" and has a very interesting line-up of artists including Chris Anthony, Tom Bagshaw, Shawn Barber, Scott G. Brooks, Ray Caesar (image below), Sas & Colin Christian, Korin Faught, Harma Heikens (image above), Liz McGrath and Martin Wittfooth. So this should be rather sweet.

I find it particularly interesting to see Liz McGrath rise from the interweb grave. I haven't really seen any new works since 2009 when she started using her mailing list contacts to regularly inform everyone what her husband Morgan Slade's been up to. Something I'm really not that interested in. But OH WELL.

Details below. Please note that the reception starts at 8 PM, not as 7 PM as listed on the website and that the Harma Heikens image only serves illustrative purposes as I'm not sure which of her works will be on show.


Beloved by Ray Caesar - click to enlarge

Opening reception: Saturday, January 29, 2011, 8 - 10 PM

On show: January 29 - February 9, 2011

Address: Corey Helford Gallery, 8522 Washington Boulevard, Culver City, CA 90232, USA, tel: 310-287-2340

Hours: Tue - Sat: 12 - 6 PM

Featuring: Chris Anthony, Tom Bagshaw, Shawn Barber, Scott G. Brooks, Ray Caesar, Sas & Colin Christian, Korin Faught, Harma Heikens, Liz McGrath, Martin Wittfooth, and many others


Ray Caesar's "A Gentle Kind of Cruely" at Jonathan LeVine, NYC

by Suzanne on January 17th, 2011


Calamity by Ray Caesar, 2010 - click to enlarge

The lovely people at Jonathan LeVine Gallery were so kind as to send me these sneak preview pictures for their upcoming Ray Caesar (previously featured here, here, here, here, here and everywhere) show entitled A Gentle Kind of Cruelty opening this coming Saturday, January 22.


Anniversaire by Ray Caesar, 2010 - click to enlarge

Eternally possessed by all the little devils in the detail, Ray's works are always a pure feast for the visual archaeologist and although the themes of the new series of oeuvres seem familiar, there are unknown dangers looming in every corner:

Fire ants and bandaged legs invading and distorting a picturesque Rococo scenery in Calamity (top) bring the tragedies of the Picnic at Hanging Rock to mind. And I thought Jean-Honoré Fragonard's L'escarpolette was ambiguous.

A tiny fly tries desperately to escape a birthday girl's party whistle/tongue in Anniversaire (middle) and some of Ray's favourite attributes make an appearance in Home Coming (bottom): Bat mask, spats, ice skates, tentacled baby. Courant normal then. Show details below.


Home Coming by Ray Caesar, 2010 - click to enlarge

Opening reception: Jan 22 2011, 6 - 8 PM

On show: Jan 22 - Feb 19, 2011

Address: Jonathan LeVine Gallery, 529 West 20th Street, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10011, tel: 212-243-3822 | Map & Directions

Hours: Tue - Sat: 11 AM - 6 PM

Flyer

Artist's website

Ray Caesar on the WurzelForum

... and in related eye candy news, my incredibly bright and exquisitely talented friend Amrei Hofstätter has a new website. Go say hi.

Ray Caesar et al. at Jonathan LeVine's Anniversary Show

by Suzanne on March 17th, 2010


Arabesque by Ray Caesar, 2009

March seems to be the month for anniversary shows.

In Berlin, Strychnin just celebrated the 7 Year Itch, in Santa Monica, Hi-Fructose Magazine is currently holding celebrations for its 5th birthday (more later) and in New York, Jonathan LeVine who started out in Philly with Tin Man Alley, celebrates 5 years of hard slave work for the lowbrow / pop-surrealist / neo-fantastic / eye-candy / super-flat / christ-i-don't-know-what-to-call-it-anymore art.

The line-up is impressive and eclectic, to say the least. From urban art luminaries such as Blek Le Rat, Shepard Fairey, Calma and Invader over to sculpture and assemblage art represented by Adam Wallacavage and AJ Fosik on to the "classics" of christ-i-don't-know-what-to-call-it-anymore art like Ray Caesar, Ron English, Xiaoqing Ding, Scott Musgrove, Dave Cooper, Gary Baseman, Esao Andrews, Isabel Samaras, James Jean and further on to the phantasmagoric horrorscapes of Chris Mars and the subculture photo-realism of Dan Witz.

So yes, there's something for everyone!

... and hopefully, CAEK! (^_^)


Returns of the Day by Ray Caesar, 2009

On show: February 27 - March 27, 2010

Address: Jonathan LeVine Gallery, 529 West 20th Street, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10011, USA, tel: 212-243-3822 | Map

Gallery hours: Tue - Sat: 11 AM - 6 PM

Featured artists (selection): Adam Wallacavage, AJ Fosik, Andrew Brandou, Andy Kehoe, Chris Mars, Dan Witz, Dave Cooper, Eric White, Erik Mark Sandberg, Esao Andrews, Gary Baseman, Isabel Samaras, James Jean, Miss Van, Ray Caesar, Ron English, Scott Musgrove, Stephan Doitschinoff (aka Calma), Xiaoqing Ding

Preview & opening photos

... and in totally unrelated news, I'm relieved and happy to say that I finally found the perfect male homo sapiens sapiens: Voilà! Sexeh!

by suzanne_tumblr on March 17th, 2010

Arabesque by Ray Caesar, 2009 - on show at Jonathan LeVine’s 5th anniversary show until March 27, 2010

by suzanne_tumblr on March 17th, 2010

Returns of the Day by Ray Caesar, 2009 - on show at Jonathan LeVine’s 5th anniversary show until March 27, 2010

by suzanne_tumblr on January 11th, 2010

Lavigna Vampirica by Julien Martinez, 2010

Four years ago, when Julien’s oeuvre consisted mainly of 3D.. errm.. let’s say interpretations of the works of Mark Ryden and Ray Caesar I had quite a falling out about him not using his (obvious) talents in a more noble way.

Tempers have calmed down a lot since 2006 and he even made me like Blythe dolls a tiny wee bit, which I thought impossible.

by suzanne_tumblr on August 31st, 2009

I’m not making any comparisons or accusations here, it just serves as a juxtaposition, yo!

Top: Pollux by Ray Caesar, 2005

Bottom: © Lisa Naeyaert, 2009

Also, lookie here: “Wurzeltod - My first fan before anyone else” (Ray Caesar)

OMGZ! Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! *collapses* o_O

Le grandiose monsieur Ray Caesar à Paris!

by Suzanne on February 13th, 2009


Mourning Glory by Ray Caesar - click for details/larger view

Wurzeltod® art patron saint and email poet extraordinaire Ray Caesar (featured here, here, here, here and everywhere... because I can!) currently offers French art lovers the chance to see some of his most recent works at the heavenly Magda Danysz gallery in Paris.

The show opened last week and the works will be on show until March 4.

Allons, les enfants!

On show: February 7 - March 4, 2009

Address: Galerie Magda Danysz, 78, Rue Amelot, Paris 11, France, tel. : +33 (0)1 45 83 38 51 | Map & Directions

Hours: Mon - Fri: 11 AM - 7 PM, Sat: 2 - 7 PM

Preview show | Flyer

Ray Caesar & Adam Wallacavage at Jonathan LeVine Gallery, NYC

by Suzanne on June 25th, 2008


Daybreak by Ray Caesar

Having known about Ray Caesar's upcoming exhibition at Jonathan LeVine Gallery for a couple of months now, I'm not ashamed to admit that I visited Ray's website twice a day since the beginning of June to get a glimpse of his new In the Garden of Moonlight series.

And today, gentle reader, my perseverance has finally been rewarded in the most glorious manner: Ray added 4 (!) new gallery pages to his portfolio showcasing some experimental new artistic techniques and a plethora of black insectoid mecha automata that I wish would be adopted by the TFL as public transportation vehicles.

Oh, and as if a Ray Caesar show wouldn't offer enough eye candy already, Jonathan LeVine presents tentaculicious new chandelier sculptures by Adam Wallacavage at the same time.

Caesar's In the Garden of Moonlight and Wallacavage's Les Trésors de la Tanière de Neptune both open this Saturday, June 28, 7 - 9 PM.


Descent by Ray Caesar

Opening reception: Saturday, June 28, 2008, 7 - 9 PM

On show: June 28 - July 26, 2008

Opening times: Tue - Sat, 11 AM - 6 PM

Address: Jonathan LeVine Gallery, 529 West 20th Street, 9E New York, NY 10011, USA, tel: 212 243 3822 | Map

Artists' websites: Ray CaesarAdam Wallacavage

Opening reception picsJuxtapoz review