Street art, by way of Poland and Paris, is the substance of the new show It Hurts at the inviting Brooklynite Gallery, deep in the heart of Bed-Stuy. The two artists represented are Remed on one side of the gallery and Zbiok on the other; the pieces face each other on canvasses. The title of the show a work of art itself, painted on the side of a building next to the enclosed lot in the back of the gallery.
Remed’s pieces are of two kinds. His Past, Present, and Futur are childlike yet damaged, such as a depiction of Mickey Mouse with a gunshot wound in the head, a pistol with a minuscule "pop" flag sticking out of the barrel, "I killed him" written in a child’s handwriting, and a smiley sun with x-ed out eyes all evoking a rotted innocence. On the other hand, his depictions of conjugal love (Pareja Acostada, Pareja Sentada) in the solid-color forms of man and woman standing out boldly from black backgrounds, changing color where they overlap, are also virtuosic. His pieces display both a rough-edged anxiety and a confident, tranquil contemplation of love.
Zbiok’s zany cartoon characters betray a political sensibility. Though their colors are light, angles soft and they have comically distorted features (all characters’ eyes are closed, faces turned or masked), the ski masks, machine guns, combat boots, brick walls, barbed wire and guard dog are serious details. His paramilitary disco and dancing bandits are seasoned with clever commentary, such as "Life ain’t a bag of sweets." Zbiok, like Remed, shows a typographic flair throughout his pieces.
Though the street is the most natural venue for these artists, Brooklynite gives them the center stage they deserve. Well worth a visit.
Remed & Zbiok: It Hurts at Brooklynite Gallery until March 22