Karo Alexanian

Nature morte au pot jaune
Nature morte au pot jaune, 2007
acrylic on board, 24" × 20"
Figure sur le fond noir et blanc
Figure sur le fond noir et blanc, 2009
acrylic on panel, 36" × 48"
Profil I
Tendresse, 2001
acrylic on board, 19" × 13½"
Expression I
Expression I
acrylic on panel, 40" × 30"
Intention
Intention, 2005
acrylic on board, 52" × 44"
Masque Blanc
Masque Blanc, 2002
mixed media on board, 24" × 24"
Coiffure
Coiffure, 2005
acrylic on board, 36" × 12"
Still Life
Still Life, 2008
acrylic on panel, 13½" × 22"
Resolution
Resolution, 2005
acrylic on board, 36½" × 36"
Personnage et le cercle
Personnage et le cercle, 2008
acrylic on board, 24" × 22"
Rituel
Rituel, 2007
acrylic on board, 46" × 40"
Personnage Rouge Assis
Personnage Rouge Assis, 2005
acrylic on board, 24" × 12"
Trois signes
Trois signes, 2004
acrylic on board, 16" × 20"
Unite
Univers, 2007
acrylic on panel, 24" × 30"

Slideshow

Karo Alexanian – Artist Biography

Karo Alexanian

At first glance, the portraits and still lifes of Karo Alexanian seem to be derived from the great ancient Egyptian frescoes. Figures and objects from daily life are reproduced using a strikingly fresh combination of simple lines, colours and texture. Described by the artist as “primitive contemporary,” the work is akin to studied observation – a generalization of form that allows the artist to free up the essential and transform it with gesture. As a result of this process, portraits are reduced to a combination of singular planes – faces become masks and yet still reflect the interior harmony of the subjects.

Alexanian is adamant, however, that the emphasis of his art is not on technique. “I am always trying to incorporate a spiritual side to my work,” he says, “something I find strangely absent from a lot of modern art”. The position of the figures in Décision I and II, for example, suggest a basic emotional state. Facial expressions are not required for the viewer to empathize with the quandary that Karo's subjects are experiencing. In Décision I, the subject seems almost paralyzed as to what direction to take while the stark, worrisome eye of the vase goads the person onwards. In Décision II, the figure is again placed in an almost bare room with an accompanying still life; however, in this case, the subject is slightly hunched over, almost too resigned to consider any options. Sur fond vert is reminiscent of Dallaire but the subject matter – a woman half obscured by shadow - suggests something much more emotional.

Karo Alexanian was born in Georgia in 1956. He graduated from the Yerevan School of Fine Arts in Armenia and studied painting at the Studio of Painting and Graphic Arts in Moscow, where he was assigned important mural commissions. He has lived in Quebec since 1997 and, a member of the international Union of Artists since 1994, has exhibited his works across Europe, the United States and Canada.

Daphne OdjigDaphne Odjig, Canadian Indigenous Artist and Icon Dies at 97. Click here for more details.

Odjig is frequently referred to as the "Grandmother of Indigenous Art." She has been the recipient of many awards, honours and recognitions for her works, to name a few: The Order of Canada, the Governor General's Award, and eight Honorary Doctorates. Her works have been shown in the National Gallery of Canada, The McMichael Canadian Art Collection, the Canadian Museum of Civilization and the Art Gallery of Ontario.


She established the first native-run fine art print house in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 1971. Known as 'Odjig Indian Prints,' this print house was so successful that it evolved into an Indigenous gallery space in 1974, called the New Warehouse Gallery, run by Odjig and her husband, Chester Beavon. She was also a founding member of the Indian Group of Seven. This artistic group's purpose was to promote Contemporary Indigenous art and artists.

Alex JanvierAlex Janvier's major retrospective, "Alex Janvier: Modern Indigenous Master" is now on display at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa.

Alex Janvier is one of Canada's most acclaimed contemporary Indigenous artists. His career of sixty-five years has yielded thousands of paintings, and more than twenty-five murals and public commissions. This retrospective of his artwork is on display from 25 November 2016 to 17 April 2017.

(Photo credit: Kim Griffiths) Click here for more details.