James Razko: Casting Shadows

734 East 3rd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90013
Oct 21, 5 PM - 8 PM — ends Dec 02, 2023
Anna Zorina Gallery is pleased to present Casting Shadows, James Razko’s solo exhibition featuring his latest series of paintings titled Monomyth as well as works from his acclaimed Tiles series.

In Casting Shadows, Razko masterfully applies “hyper-illusion” effect challenging a viewer to distinguish between reality and imagination. Monomyth initially resembles collage but upon close examination, it unveils itself as paint that plays freely with compressed space, often defying physics. This play on space is carried out over intricately dyed and painted canvas and fabrics that have Sirst been bound and then immersed in water and paint. For Razko, tie-dye is not only a symbol of counterculture and resistance to technological uniformity but also represents humanity’s journey through time, a surface where chaos and intention coexist.

In artist’s Tiles series, Razko combines the Western art of trompe l’oeil with the rich arabesque tradition of mosaics. This fusion of artistic motifs creates a visual dialogue that transcends cultural boundaries. On the surface the tiles appear as exquisite examples of trompe l’oeil where the meticulous rendering of surfaces and textures tricks the viewer’s eye into believing they are real. However, upon careful analysis, one will notice the loose brush strokes that fabricate a deeper narrative of the artworks. Beyond the nearly-real surface, the wounds of time and conSlict become apparent. Bullet holes, blast craters, and the general decay of age penetrate the image, all invite us to contemplate the fragile balance between beauty and the enduring traces of human experience. Razko’s exploration of the convergence between trompe l’oeil and arabesque mosaic tradition is a testament to the power of art as a medium for reSlection and dialogue.

Razko’s work across both series underscores the pivotal role of illusion in transcending personal and cultural boundaries while exploring universal themes of humanity. Casting Shadows transports the viewer beyond the conSines of the everyday life, challenging us to explore the connections between perception, belief, and the mystical. The artist sees Casting Shadows as a collection of timeless metaphors of human transformation.

JAMES RAZKO (b. 1987, New Jersey) is a Los Angeles based artist who grew up on a small island in New Jersey. At the age of seventeen, Razko joined the military to escape suburbia and Sinance higher education. In 2008, James deployed to Iraq as part of a special forces team, a transformative experience that propelled Razko into the visual arts. Razko completed his BFA at Stockton University in 2011 and earned his MFA at the New York Academy of Art in 2015. Razko’s recent solo exhibitions include Destroy! Rebuild. Repeat?, Spring Break in New York (2021); Visions, Stockton University in New Jersey (2018) along with group exhibitions at Made in Tashkeel, Tashkeel Nad Al Sheba, Dubai (2022); SIT STILL: Self-portraits in the age of distraction, Anna Zorina Gallery, New York (2020); and Take Home a Nude, Sotheby’s, New York (2020) to name a few. His work is published in the acclaimed book, The Figure. He is a recipient of the Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation grant and he was awarded Eric Fischl’ 66 Artist-in-Residence Program in 2019.

For further information, please contact Ismael Gardea at +1323-633-9700 or via email at ismael@annazorinagallery.com