Photos: Chris Mars and Mark Dean Veca in NYCJuxtapoz // Sunday, 21 Oct 2007
Photos by George Koroneos
Everyone had the same question in mind at last night's gallery opening at Jonathan LeVine Gallery in New York City: Will Chris Mars show up?
The sad truth was that the reclusive artist and drummer for the legendary Replacements was not going to be there. In truth, his work doesn't need to have a face attached. The haunting images of hollowed-out faces, corpse-like creatures, and bleak landscapes speak of desolation and lost hope. Supposedly, the artist draws from the imaginary monsters his schizophrenic brother saw during childhood. It's hard to argue that these creatures could come from anywhere but the psyche of a tortured soul.
In contrast, Mark Dean Veca's section of the gallery, titled "Imbroglio," was a colorful wonderland of oranges, blues, and greens. The Brooklyn-based artist turned LeVine's smallest gallery room into a giant abstract mural that resembled massive amoebas crawling around the wall. Look closely, and you realize that the blue/green blobs are actual paintings depicting pop culture characters and scenes of Americana. According to the artist, a few potential buyers went as far as to ask him if he would come to their homes and paint the giant orange mural on their walls. Veca smiled and said he is up for anything.
Jonathan LeVine and Mark Dean Veca
Jonathan LeVine, Aprella, artist David Stoupakis
Four bald dudes: Drew Ford, Jonathan LeVine, Michael Mararian, and Daniel Davidson
Chris Mars fans
Packed show floor
The Orange room
Carlo McCormick and Malena Seldin
...and baby makes two
Close look at "Descendants of Hanford" by Chris Mars
Close look at "From the Well" by Chris Mars
Charlie and artist Ryan Brown
Close look at "To Serve Her" by Chris Mars
Close look at "The Frivolous Adjustment" by Chris Mars
Close look at "Meat Curtains" by Mark Dean Veca
Close look at "The Thin Veil Players" by Chris Mars
Mark Dean Veca
More information about this show is online at the gallery's website, www.jonathanlevinegallery.com.