Opening Sunday, July 10th from 2 - 6 pm.
Recent paintings on paper
In this sense, Gentile's work is reminiscent of female portraits by radical early 20th-century painters, such as Austrian Expressionist Egon Schiele and German Surrealist Christian Schad. Stylistically, the paintings, with their flat surfaces and bold hyper-saturated colors resemble those of Alex Katz--if Katz had hung around downtown chicks instead of Upper East Side matrons.
Michael Gentile considers himself a "perv," though I'm not sure his models would agree. Their identities shine through his blur of Catholic guilt. While some of the girls seem like they might have bounced on Uncle Michael's knee, they share the all-knowing looks of Balthus' babes. Gentile's youngest, most innocent subjects are starry-eyed and disturbingly precious, much like the early '80s "children paintings" by Jiri Georg Dokoupil, or generation Y's hottest selling doll, My Pretty Pony. The more womanly girls have the rich decadent, sometimes lightly whipped, cheesecake texture of a Mel Ramos or Francis Picabia pin-up.
During my last studio visit, I asked Michael if any of his girls were non-Gentile, i.e. Jewish. "No, but only by chance" was his response. The true belief that Gentile's subjects have in common is a primary interest in self, which makes these the perfect portraits for our current era of narcissism.
Please join us for the Gentile Girls opening reception Sunday July 10th, 2-6PM, at Abaton Garage. Refreshments will be served throughout the afternoon/evening. Emerald Tablets, Jersey City's best known (and just plain best) audio-alchemists, will perform a set at 5:30.
From NYC take the Newark-bound PATH train to Journal Square. Taxis are available on Kennedy Boulevard, directly in front of the station. The ride to Abaton Garage takes less than five minutes and costs approximately $5. If you prefer to walk, simply stroll down Kennedy Boulevard about 3/4 of a mile, until you reach Gifford Avenue. Then turn right; 100 is in the middle of the block.
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