Sunday, August 31, 2014

Second Annual True Colors Exhibition at Antenna

True Colors by Sarah Sole
From the Grindr Series by Keith Perelli
Among the peculiarities that set this city apart is how identity issues, ethnicities and orientations, can quietly become scrambled or overlap. Whether due to inclusion or laissez faire, boundaries tend to blur over time. This year's True Colors expo not only added the letter "Q,"for Queer, to its LGBT former subtitle, but also "Allied Artists," to include miscellaneous others. Whatever, this is the most relaxed yet dynamic local gender orientation art show yet. Curated by Holis Hannan, it extends Antenna's  legacy of loosely edgy expositions. Keith Perelli's series based on Instagram selfies posted on Grindr--a GPS - based gay hookup app--is iconic. Here Perelli's briskly gestural brush strokes imbue the motley menagerie with a striking quality of presence. Equally iconic is Sarah Sole's imaginary portrait of Hillary Clinton presiding over the wedding of two older guys, above. Rendered in an expressionist realist style, this is typical of Nola native Sole's hypothetical Hillary portraits that have become an internet sensation of late, while also conveying how once radical ideas can seem more ordinary as their advocates near their Medicare years.

Lost Fable by Audra Kohout
 Works by high profile artists include an unusually philosophical tableau by George Dureau featuring  a trio of Creole dudes as mythic creatures pondering a clarinet atop a pedestal where the artist's own ghostly visage appears as mysteriously as a stigmata. Works by Skylar Fein include a 2-D seriographic sculpture, Alison's Combat Boots, propped up in a corner like some lost relic of the Village People. But it's often the more ambiguous pieces--like NOPD officer and artist Beau Hoffacker's painting of an assault rifle draped in Mardi Gras beads, or Audra Kohout's stunningly psychological assemblages of vintage doll parts and miscellaneous flotsam in bell jars--that give this show its element of surprise. In a city where celebrity is more often a measure of flamboyant eccentricity than overt commercialism, True Colors is what the late Frank Davis might have called "naturally N'Awlins." ~Bookhardt

Second Annual True Colors: Group Exhibition of Works by LGBTQ and Allied Artists, Through Sept. 7, Antenna Gallery, 3718 Saint Claude Ave., 250-7975; Antenna Gallery, 3718 Saint Claude Ave., 250-7975.