In his first west coast solo exhibition, New York artist Bradley Castellanos will exhibit a new series of cut photo collages layered with deeply colored oil paint and resin at Marx & Zavattero, February 4 – March 13. Castellanos is well known for his seamless combination of the sober documentation of large-format photography and the exuberant energy of abstract painting.
Castellanos’ subject matter ranges from abandoned industrial sites and decayed urban environments to sweeping barren landscapes, and the disquieting solitude of pastoral settings. His intricately cut photo-collages are layered with intensely colored oil paint and accented with pools of reflective resin. The opulent surfaces in his collaged paintings vary from flat to reflective, high relief to sable-brush smooth, from one area to the next. Theatrical in light, composition, and temperament, Castellanos’ work is never romanticized or idealized. His color, imagery, and tone of isolation suggest the failures of industrialization and man’s quest to reconcile our part in it. His careful and sensitive treatment of such subject matter paints a silver lining onto the forlorn atmospheres, where the decay is met by unexpected beauty and grandeur in the tradition of some of the great landscape painters.
“I think of my paintings as passages in a novel, locations on a map, without a supporting narrative to form a cohesive linear story,” Castellanos explains. “Everything appears to be unstable and on hollow ground. Figures appear and vanish. They are silhouettes or ghostly inhabitants that are consumed by the surrounding landscape. It is an environment at odds with itself, the foundation unstable and composed of polarities. It attracts and it repels, it is painting and photography.”
Castellanos has been featured in solo exhibitions at Caren Golden Fine Art, New York, as well as Mogadishni Gallery, Denmark. Upcoming group exhibitions include Paper Landscapes, Indianapolis Museum of Art, and Lives of the Hudson, The Tang Teaching Museum, Saratoga Springs, NY. Past group shows include Future Tense: Reshaping The Landscape, Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase, NY; Ominous Atmosphere, Heather Marx Gallery, San Francisco; The New Collage, Pavel Zoubok Gallery, New York; and A Delicate Arrangement, David Zwirner Gallery, New York. His work has been written about and reproduced in ARTnews, Harper’s Magazine, Current, Etorno Magazine, and La Repubblica. The artist received his MFA from the School of Visual Arts, New York and his BFA from Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, NY.