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“Drawn” Draws Art Lovers to Art at Michael’s

March 30, 2011

"Untitled" by Alejandro Gehry.

Two untitled nudes by Gehry, above the plentiful bar at the opening.

Kim McCarty’s outstanding, always intriguing series of Art at Michael’s shows in the upstairs gallery of Michael’s Santa Monica keeps going from strength to strength.  Right on the heels of winter’s acclaimed Billy Al Bengston retrospective comes “Drawn.”  The show—curated by Amanda Fairey and Katherine B. Cone of Subliminal Projects, the art collective of renowned poster and street artist Shepard Fairey—focuses on two young, exceptionally talented local artists who bring fresh insights to the ages-old technique of drawing.

Alejandro Gehry (son of famed architect Frank) creates elegant, spare female nudes in which relaxed yet well-disciplined lines create impressively dimensional figures on paper that recall the wire frames or armatures some sculptors create before building up clay.  He then fills in these forms with sensuous washes of flesh-toned watercolor that bring his subjects to surprising life.

By contrast, Vanessa Prager’s drawings in red and blue archival ballpoint pen are intensely detailed, with countless small strokes applied to antique music staff paper building up realistically rendered yet surreal images of people and animals. Often, Prager omits key features from faces or bodies, which only adds to the haunting quality of her images.

“Drawn” will remain on view until the summer. Come by for lunch or dinner—or an innovative drink from our new farm-to-glass mixologist Jason Robey and some bar bites in our new cocktail lounge—and check out the show.

"Tiger" by Vanessa Prager.

"Kodachrome" and "Fault" by Prager.

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