Internationally renowned tattooer and artist Paul Booth is making big waves in the art world again with the opening of his second gallery in Manhattan, Booth Gallery. Booth first came onto the scene in 1998 when he opened Last Rights Tattoo and Art. Booth Gallery, which is located in the same building as his original space, opened its doors on November 11th for their premiere exhibit Second Sight. The group exhibition entitled features the work of Chad Wys, Jesse Draxler, Ekaterina Panikanova, Ted Lawson, Jade Townsend, Johan Barrios, Mike Cockrill, Ryan Hewett and Todd Lim. Booth Gallery’s premiere show is steeped in popular culture references and is also exploring the deeper connections between perception, interpenetration and information.
Second Sight is a bit of a departure from the work shown in Last Rights Gallery, which could loosely be categorized as contemporary surrealism. Second Sight is steeped in meaning that many of the artists featured in this show are asking the viewer to consider on a deeper level. Transmorgification by Chad Wys for example combines an image that the artist found that appears to be an 18th century mother with her children with a distant town in the background, that has been modified by the artist using glitter glue. The woman’s face and body have been rendered virtually out aside from the shinning gold berkah-looking dress he has put her in. The woman’s eyes, hands and feet are visible and the rest is a wash in gold glitter. The same goes for the two small children in the image who have been put in matching silver berkahs. It is Wys’ simple action of modifying the imaging, which has totally changed the meaning of it and also requires the viewer look more closely at it. Given the events in news in the last week, this piece has also been put into another context.
Second Sight is a mixture of two-dimensional and three-dimensional works that have been put together to demand a larger discourse. Untitled by Joseph Barros is a haunting watercolor and graphite painting that is reminiscent of 18th century ghost photography. In Barros painting, the man depicted in a suite is headless, where his head was has been rendered out and glows from the paper. It appears as if the man’s head has been erased but the rest of this body is present. It is works such as this that require a second glimpse to full grasp the meaning of the work. The show is an open invitation to help comprehend what is literally in front of us and to push the viewer to think beyond.
Second Sight is on view until December 30th and is located at 325 W 38TH St. Suite #1.
Article by Anni Irish
Photographs provided by the gallery