Ophir Agassi “One To The Next”

The Painting Center

poster for Ophir Agassi “One To The Next”

This event has ended.

The Painting Center presents One to the Next, an exhibition of recent works by Ophir Agassi in the Main Gallery and Project Room curated by Karen Wilkin with an accompanying catalogue and essay by Christina Kee.

Karen Wilkin writes, “Ophir Agassi consistently confounds our expectations. He first captures our attention with familiar, literally iconic images from the history of art – a Madonna and Child, for example – but then compels us to ignore what we have recognized and concentrate, instead, on the Platonic, archetypical structures underlying even the most explicit narrative. The result is to destabilize meaning and assert the presence of the artist, provoking us to consider the fictive nature of art.”

The generous offering of works on view presents Agassi’s exploration of archetypes that have accompanied humanity from time immemorial and underscores the relevance of these archetypes in the context of our contemporary experience. In the past, archetypes remained fixed and unwavering; individuals, likewise, were forced to fulfill societal roles and expectations or suffer the consequences of isolation and being cast out. With the Invention of the Human, a phrase coined by the late Harold Bloom, the possibility of epiphany and transformation opened up in art and, much later, in life.

Agassi engages the unprecedented transformations we are experiencing in our contemporary society through an investigation of the unexpected possibilities that arise when the identity of an archetype is allowed to shift. He gives voice to the internal struggles, the triumphs and tribulations of the artist that are shared by many today who tirelessly pursue a deeply personal vision of who they are and who they wish to be.

Abstraction and figuration co-exist in these works through a process that is at once rigorous and free. Intentionally improvisational, Agassi’s method reveals hidden relationships in the underlying abstractions at the core of these images. Expectations are confounded and new insights provoked into the nature, identity and interrelation of the subjects treated. From one work to the next, one individual to the next, one generation to the next, what was once accepted as fact is overturned and in its place we perceive unbounded possibility.

Ophir Agassi was born in Haifa, Israel and raised in Brooklyn, New York. He received his undergraduate degree from Yale University and an MFA from the New York Studio School. Agassi has exhibited at The Painting Center, Bowery Gallery and First Street Gallery in New York City; Parker’s Box, Sideshow, Storefront Ten Eyck and David & Schweitzer in Brooklyn; La Vigie-Art Contemporain in Nîmes, France and HMC in Budapest, Hungary. He has been an artist-in-residence in New York City at Chashama, Triangle Artists’ Workshop, and Cross Path Culture; nationally at the Vermont Studio Center, UCross Foundation, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Hambidge Center and I-Park; and internationally at the Royal Drawing School’s Dumfries House Estate in East Ayrshire, United Kingdom. Agassi’s work has been reviewed in The Hudson Review, The New Criterion, American Artist and Concept magazine. The artist lives and works in Brooklyn, NY and Bethlehem, PA.



from September 01, 2020 to September 26, 2020

Opening Reception on 2020-09-10 from 17:00 to 20:00


Ophir Agassi

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