(Originally proposed to the Buckham Gallery in Flint, MI, for their 2014 season. The proposal was accepted, but because the early show date offered left little time to prepare, and because the gallery intended to show their work alongside unrelated work by non-artists, De Genaro and Harnois felt that the proposal’s theme would be unjustifiably compromised, and with deep regret, they declined the show.)
Representations of the human figure in gigantic form are the subject of a group show proposal by the artists Matthew De Genaro and John Harnois. The artists have been in engaged in an exchange of ideas since 1994, and have chosen this subject to be their first show together.
John Harnois uses classic panoramic film camera equipment to discover the figurative landscape of the nude, in ordinary people enlarged to the visual scale of the scenic landscape.
The Acrobat Series. Panoramic Inkjet Prints 36″ x 120″ each
Matt De Genaro evokes the play of gigantic toys in massive air-inflated soft sculptures of the human form, which breathe, grow and diminish, reconsidering the idea that Bigness equals Greatness.
L to R – Inflatable Man, Fabric & Fans, 16 ft high. Balloon Man, 1986, Fabric & Helium Balloons, 16 ft high. Cloud Man, Photograph. Inflatable Man, Fabric & Fans, 16 ft high. InnerTube Man, Innertubes, 15 ft high.
Accompanying these monumental works, and by contrast, each artist has created also minute representations of the human figure in series, which reveal the power of the small.
L to R – De Genaro, You & Me & Everybody Else, Drawing, 18″ x 24″, Harnois, Twirling and Running, Photo Inkjet Print, 18″ x 24″, Degenaro, 20 People, Monoprint, 24″ x 36“. Harnois, Marching, Photo Inkjet Print, 18″ x 24″.
Together they are challenging our perception of the figure and the conventional ways it is displayed as Art. The near-impropriety of Harnois’ panoramic nudes is set off by contrast with De Genaro’s playful accessible fun. This show is a simmering explosion of dialectical extremes visually and metaphorically.