By Artist Amir H. Fallah

‘A Stranger In Your Home’ | ‘A Cut Above’ @ Shulamit Nazarian | The Loft at Liz’s

September 27, 2017

There were multiple openings on La Brea Ave Saturday night, and the two I attended provided meaningful works displayed to the audience. The first show, a solo exhibition titles A Stranger in Your Home by the artist Amir. H. Fallah at Shulamit Nazarian, was a peaceful, placating, collection whose sole subject was the Arab refugee crisis. The most positive element of the work was its intentional absence of anything political. The subject matter, then, was necessarily transcending the profane and put in a spiritually sacred plane.

 

I must applaud Mr. Fallah with his conscientiousness here, for no doubt another artist with a more acerbic boiling vat in his soul would do what has been typified by post-modernity, and that is lacerate society in order to lessen the pressure of the vaporized poison steaming inside. Indeed, his chapel with the homage to Western European mosaics and houses of sacredness raises the matter at hand above the grime of jolting news events which society today reacts to in such an unfortunately animalistic manner.

 

 

I do not see in his work as a glorification of the refugee with his sympathizing of the subject, as if this is a messianic messenger to the damned West. Because, as described beforehand, this is an edification of a serious and difficult to resolve current event. That, regardless of the animosity toward the foreigners to society, it must never be forgotten nor neglected that they are human, all too human. Lest humanity is treated as meat as they have been so horrifically in the 20th century. Hence the conscientious decision by the artist, as he confided, in choosing unnatural skin tones, to focus solely upon the humanity and not upon any unsuspecting prejudices the subject may have. This work, taken in total, then, is a poetic caution sign on the road our Western societies are driving upon.

 

 

Further down the road, tucked away up a store front, The Loft at Liz’s held a small but profound opening titled A Cut Above with several very talented and novel artists. The great joy in participating was the eclectic artistic mediums on display, for one thing, and then the amazingly successful experimentations. The king of the artistic ingenuity belongs to Japanese Syuta Mitomo, and his hall of ostensibly mindless contemporary pseudo-origami paperworks. My first instinct was a shrug at another demonstration of the Japanese quirky obsession with making small tasks perfect. But when speaking with Mr. Mitomo, I was amazed at his inspiration: gel electrophoresis.

 

 

This is art, then, that is birthed through someone working as a pharmacist who found the expression of nature through his scientific methodology so profound he was overcome with gratitude, an urgent sense to express it beyond words. Gratitude is, as Nietzsche said, the source of all great artwork. And it is a great expression for the sake of culture. For gel electrophoresis is such a recent technique, once reserved for fundamental researchers in universities, to now being so prolific in the commercialization of pharmaceutical reactions to the human genome it can be further brought into the consciousness of society – its culture. But how?

 

Mitomo-san is an excellent demonstration of the artist acting Promethean to his fellow human being. Texts can be written about this scientific technique and its vital importance for the amelioration of mankind from the most tragic of circumstances – congenital defects. Lectures can be heard about its importance in healing the world’s sick of circumstances they were born into and which they have no means of overcoming. But to, in a resplendently minimalist manner, pique curiosity and then feed it with knowledge is a mark of High Art. It is perhaps the highest form of education – giving mankind what has never been a concept for being. True, this may be alternatively interpreted to be a form of human idolatry; of self-worshipping man’s technique. But I disagree – it is a celebration fundamentally of a nature which enables such a technique to possibly be. Of a world which grants man the creative agency to overcome his physical limitations from malady. That there is a possibility for curing the world of its defects is a testimony to Leibniz’s optimism: that we are in the best of all possible worlds.

 

Carla Viparelli is certainly the most elegant artists I have ever encountered. Her art is effortless at bringing to Earth an inordinately complex idea. Before I delve further, I do want to commend the diversity of her experimenting in space, for it can be said confidently there was not even a smidgeon of vanity in any of the creativity.

 

 

Vanity is one of the besmirching flaws commonly witnessed with an artist seeking to breach his limitations. But Ms. Viparelli does so in such a gracefully talented manner, it’s perhaps demeaning to even consider her experimenting with space altogether! For experimentation presupposes some likely erroneousness in the outcome, whereas mastery presupposes none and in fact argues the work as the standard.

 

 

Returning to her genius inspiration behind cacti, she is gratified at the paradox of the plant’s bounded infiniteness. Unbeknownst to me, the cactus is a plant that can conceivably grow infinitely high if it had enough nutrients. It is this infinite potential captured so botanically simple that acts as a metaphor to man. This is not just an interpretation but her intention!

 

After all, the mathematics developed in the late 19th century and mid-20th century through Cantor and Gödel, whom follow on the heels of Immanuel Kant once century prior, successfully put mankind in its place. Whereas with the spawn of the Renaissance and the recrudescence of Ancient Greek culture permitted by the successful synthesis of Greek philosophy with Catholicism by Thomas Aquinas, the hunger for man and his knowledge created a pretense for the possibility of an infinite expansion of his knowledge – arguably to the point of deification if this suggests, even tacitly, omniscience. Even a century after Kant definitively eliminated the pretense, the intellectual movements of positivism and even Bertrand Russell’s grand theory of mathematics stubbornly persisted. It is so majestically, powerfully, poetic that Ms. Viprallei can so meagerly falsify the line of thinking that, when taken to its logical conclusion, is an absurdity. All one needs to be reminded by is a look up to the innumerable night stars. Or, a cactus.

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