'Friendship' by Edel Bordon

‘Caution’ & ‘Paradejo de la Soledad’ @ Lois Lambert Gallery

March 14, 2018

(Through May 5th, 2018)


‘Caution’ is consistent with Lois Lambert Gallery’s opening history. Much like Molding a Hard Rock, the artist Martiros Adalian takes a radical approach to stereotypical Western fine art portraitures, imbuing them with a sense of irreverence through the use of brightly colored textures and action with the irrational painted layers sporadically layered. Included in most of the works is caution tape, adding another sense of danger to the ersatz desecration. Is Mr. Adalian being sacrilegious with the treatment of staid art?



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Is he being wildly provocative? We don’t have our jaws drop when we lay witness to the works; we don’t feel Velázquez being violated with the treatment in his work Bluebird. This is not a condescending effort, in other words, to move the audience away from stale pretensions of what beauty is. based on the merit of beauty itself, however, do these works succeed?




Undoubtedly, they do. And it is this achievement of a more complicated canvas than what has historically been tried which is worth commending in its own right. Whereas historically the concept of artistic beauty hinged on an artist’s talent for being able to render reality as accurately as possible, in the case of Adalian, there is a precious balance in introducing a controlled chaos, an element of free radicalism which does not disintegrate any of the works into visual gibberish.


Hence, we have art which is, for a lack of a better phase, tastefully free-spirited. The work encapsulates visually the concept of creative destruction, of confronting and indeed overcoming the past, with the injection of vivacity. Each work is viscerally dynamic. This itself is illustrative of a vibrancy and reminder that contradicting academics, and tradition at large, is never a bad thing per se.


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In addition to the Caution exhibition, there was an opening for the Cuban artist Edel Bordon titled Paradoja de la Soledad (Paradox of the Solitude). I could not help but find his paintings reminiscent of Marc Chagall’s ethereal beauty, a sort of gentle will-o’-the-wisp veneer which coated each composition. Paradoxically (or maybe paradox is the intent!), the compositions do not show solitude per se, as each human being is accompanied by others. But the works then raise the question about whether intimacy implies camaraderie – a joint venture of experience. we may find ourselves in the most bustling of metropolises, for instance, but does that make our existence ever fuller?


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Take the epifocal work in the exhibit Friendship. It casts an ominous sentiment toward the partners in crime. While we do not see space between them, we can feel it, with each one being separate and disconnect from each other, both with a somber and disappointing look. What’s altogether terrific about this piece is its invocation of the etherealness aforementioned – we are not simply capturing a state of affairs but an emotional flux, and one which is entirely relatable; the moment perhaps, of being at the crossroads with someone well-known.


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All in all, the exhibitions provided a nice one-two punch of rambunctiousness with softness.


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