Ravi Zupa's "Other Avatar" Descends on Hashimoto Contemporary NYC
Other Avatar highlights Zupa's multi-faceted studio practice and draws, sometimes literally, on various sources of inspiration, such as technology, mythology, and Eastern and Western religions, to create a unique universe filled with religious figures, historical icons, and anthropomorphic creatures.
Originating in Hindu mythology, the word 'avatar', by definition, represents the soul being released from its bodily form on earth. In today's digital age, the word takes on an entirely different meaning – the tiny graphic image we use in our social media profiles. In today's rapidly changing world, we are gods of our own universe, with multiple incarnations in various abstract dimensions. Deeply inspired, the artist views the universality and lateral connectedness associated with 'avatar' as a modern day interpretation he hopes to represent in his work by melding mythological symbols and meanings into the world's current context.
As part of his ongoing Mightier Than series, Other Avatar exhibits four deconstructed antique typewriters that reassemble into assault weapons, bringing new meaning to the old adage 'the pen is mightier than the sword'. Additionally, the artist has created a series of 13 'birdpot' sculptures, a recurring hybrid creature that has a pot-shaped body with a bird face. These mixed-media creatures are included in a life-size installation that surrounds an elaborately dressed Samurai riding on horseback and wielding an assembled typewriter rifle, which was most recently exhibited at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art.
Other Avatar opens at Hashimoto Contemporary NYC on June 29th, with an opening reception from 6 to 8 pm, and is open through July 20th.