Two Amazing Art Openings

Saturday, October 6 from 5 – 7 pm

In the Exhibit Space:  

Africa:  The Holocausts of Rwanda and Sudan

Africa, The Holocausts of Rwanda and Sudan is a color photographic essay with a text by Lucian Niemeyer. The exhibit first appeared at The Delaware Art Museum in Wilmington, Delaware. The exhibit has since appeared in many other venues with the last being at the Maxwell Museum at the University of New Mexico, where over 160 images were displayed over a year. A book by the same name was published by The University of New Mexico Presss in 2005. It was followed by the book Darfur in 2007. The book Africa was nominated by the University for a Pulitzer prize. Though it did not win, a copy of the book was given to every United States

Senator by a foundation in Virginia. Recently Mr. Niemeyer gave lectures to students at the University of Alberta and Calgary University in Canada. He was made an honorary citizen of Calgary and presented a white hat for his work. Recently this honor was given to the Dalai Lama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton.Africa, The Holocausts of Rwanda and Sudan tells the
story of ten years of genocide in Africa. The first chapter reveals by image and story the terrible genocide and aftermath in Rwanda where over one million innocent people lost their lives in a horrible massacre. The images were taken in 1994 in the refugee camps. The second chapter illustrates the slaves taken in raids by Arabs wanting slaves in Northern Sudan. The slaves were being traded back by a non-governmental organization for $35 each, or the price of a goat. The third chapter is the story of the proclaimed Holy Jihad on the south and demonstrates the conflict between Islam and Christianity. The fourth chapter takes place in the Nuba Mountains. Thousands of years of migration by the Nubians to flee the tyranny of Egypt, then the Arab onslaught resulted in 30 different tribes and languages to the mountains up the Nile. The Arab government has determined that they want these people to practice radical Islam and to adopt the Sharia law. Over 2.5 million people have lost their lives in this genocide which few people know about.

At Destiny Allison Fine Art:

Vulnerabilites:  Works by Francisco Benitez, Emila Faro, and Destiny Allison

Three artists explore the human face to speak of the human condition.

Opening reception Saturday, October 6, 2012, 5-7 pm

There is probably nothing else that can trigger an emotional resonance in us more readily than looking into the face of a fellow human being. For centuries artists have been trying to capture the ineffable quality that a face has to move us. The face has been rendered by artists in thousands of ways through the centuries, exploring the emotions we are capable of eliciting with our facial expressions. Destiny Allison Fine Art is hosting a group show, “Vulnerabilities”, in which three artists, each in their unique style, use the face as a conveyance to interpret their own musings about what being human entails.

In his latest series of encaustic portraits, Santa Fe-based painter Francisco Benitez seeks to have the contemporary viewer reflect upon the past’s presence in our psyches. His figures have an almost sculptural mass to them, and their countenances seem like distant cousins to those shown in the encaustic funeral portraits done during the first century in Egypt’s Fayum Basin area. His subjects seem to have a knowing of the world they’re looking out at, from a distance devoid of time. Benitez actually uses the same technique as the ancient artists of the Fayum period, working with a tetrachromy (four-color palette) of waxes and heated tools, to create his contemporary “historicized” portraits.

Benitez’ work in the show is opposed beautifully by the ephemeral and delicate quality of the work of Sicilian artist Emilia Faro, who Benitez met during his solo show in Syracuse, Italy in 2006. Impressed by her work, Benitez contacted the Kaudia Marr Gallery, and Faro was subsequently invited to have a solo exhibition in Santa Fe in 2007.

Faro has created a series of masterful watercolor portraits of ethereally lovely females and young girls, whose faces seem to be either gently dissolving away or coming into form. What is highly resolved in each is an introspective moment of thought that mostly comes through the subject’s eyes. The models are in certain instances based on fashion magazine images, others are personal acquaintances. The images as a group carry a certain message as well, rendered in the pales of watercolor, an art form once considered a “lady’s activity”. Using that particular medium and her particular subject matter, Faro’s paintings both occupy and critique themselves, nudging the viewer to understand that some gender-related notions could and should segue into a more enlightened view.


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