At Face Value

Arlene Rush, Twins III, 16”x 20”, Digital print, 2002

At Face Value

Curated by Robert Curcio and Leah Oates
July 5 – 27, 2024
Opening Reception: Friday, July 5, 6 – 8pm
Station Independent Projects, Toronto

Station Independent Projects

At Face Value features Claudine Anrather, Noah Becker, Marcy Brafman, Chambliss Giobbi, Amy Hill, Sam Jackson, D. Dominick Lombardi, Shantel Miller, Ruben Natal-San Miguel, Dana Nehdaran, Andrew Owen AO1, Arlene Rush and Pierre St. Jacques.

Station Independent Projects, Toronto, and curcioprojects, NYC, are thrilled to present At Face Value featuring thirteen artists from Canada, United Kingdom, and the United States. Premiering on Friday, July 5th, with a reception from 6 to 8pm at Station Independent Projects and closing on Saturday, 27th, 2024 at 6 pm. Many of the artists and Robert Curcio, curcioprojects, will attend the reception.

As humans, we inherently enjoy people-watching regardless of whether the situation is chaotic, tranquil, or unsettling, and with the deluge of selfies, everyone is seen. At Face Value goes beyond the surface level of expressions and does not accept a face without thinking it might not be what is right in front of you. The exhibition challenges the traditional notion of portraiture through the unique approaches these artists use, both visually and thematically compelling as the viewer comes closer to the human experience.

The self-portraits by D. Dominick Lombardi, Dana Nehdaran, and Arlene Rush are personal journeys within themselves rather than surface-level depictions of oneself. Lombardi’s irreverent surreal ink drawings are of the artist at 17, 35, and a preview of him at 95. At over 300 and counting, Nehdaran’s near-daily self-portraits on paper, in sketchbooks, or as with the paintings exhibited are intimate in scale while grand in color and brushstrokes. Rush’s digital photo series Twins examines identity, sameness, and authenticity from her experiences having a twin male counterpart while also challenging traditional misconceptions about gender roles.

Shantel Miller, Boundaries , 51cm x 40.6cm, Oil on canvas stretched over wood panel, 2024

Noah Becker, Amy Hill, Claudine Anrather, and Shantel Miller create seemingly traditional portraits, rather the subjects themselves carry much deeper context and meaning. Becker’s stylishly elegant portraits are fictitious figures you might know but can’t invoke a feeling of deja vu. Hill’s portraits juxtapose the formality and structure of Renaissance portraits with mundane contemporary images of technology and consumerism. Anrather’s beautiful activist portraits of black trans women who have passed away are surrounded by calla lilies representing rebirth, death, and a touch of sexuality. Miller’s portraits are situated in very intimate positions and moments that speak to the emotional intricacies of the daily life that black people and families experience.

Andrew Owen AO1 working with a relational art program creates a photo-based series United Diversity Portraits are hybrid portraits of post-ethnicity, color, gender, sexuality, age, etc society. This series features the now-famous model Winnie Harlow and was created with Fashion Art Toronto. Additionally, photo portrait artist Ruben Natal-San Miguel portrays his subjects in a documentary-style setting touching on socio-political issues as well as identity. Most of his work takes place in Harlem where he’s able to conduct a photographic study of the different subcultures of a variety of different groups.

Marcy Brafman and Sam Jackson’s graffiti-esque paintings create identifiable yet unrecognized personas. Brafman’s paintings take on characters from American pop culture and Hollywood using bright colors and rapid brushstrokes. While Jackson references the UK punk and fetish scenes in the ’70s and ’80s creating traditional portraits that he then scatters with gestural symbols, text, bits of collage and glitter, and tattoo-like images resulting in an almost punk rock portraiture.

Chambliss Giobbi and Pierre St. Jacques select outside references to create a unique type of portraiture. Giobbi’s medium of melted Crayola crayons crafts miniature reproductions from a collective memory of portraits by well-known artists. He describes them as “like votives; love letters to the real thing that could fit under your pillow.” Jacques’ work is referential to a caveman at peace while a spaceman is in his head attempting to disrupt his peace. Both characters speak to how two separate characters can be joined in their state of mind while also setting the tone psychologically for the space they reside within.

Chambliss Giobbi, TARTAN, 6” x 4”, Melted Children’s Crayons on Canvas, 2020

About Station Independent Projects:

Station Independent Projects organizes exhibitions and events with a focus on artist advocacy. Station Independent Projects specializes in discovering new emerging and mid-career artists that are not represented by galleries and organizes shows to connect artists to broader audiences. Before opening the gallery in Toronto, Ontario the gallery was located in the Lower East Side in New York City. Previous to opening a gallery Station Independent Projects organized exhibitions in the New York City and Chicago areas for over ten years with numerous galleries, museums, art fairs and art non-profits.

The curators would like to extend a special “Thank you” to Myles Fucci for his curatorial and administrative assistance.

Station Independent Projects Gallery
220 Geary Avenue #2B
Toronto, Ontario, Canada M6H 2C3
Thursday – Sunday, 1 – 6pm