Turning the Corner
The title of this exhibition invites a host of interpretations, each of which describes an aspect of Iliyan Ivanov’s art and may allude to the fact that the right side of the triptych called Apocalyptic Unicorn wraps from one of our gallery’s walls to the next. The abrupt 90 degree turn animates the mythical beast, separating the dark, equine body from its pale, one-horned head. Perhaps we should say further separating, in view of the difference between the way the head and body are painted – opaque off-white acrylic versus black rivulets that look a bit like an oil slick and a bit like a Pollock.
Midnight Maids places Titian’s comely, fur-clad young lover in the company of an androgynous figure derived from Gold, a symbolist work painted in 1899 by the Czech artist Frantisek Kupka. In Evening Maids, one of Tintoretto’s angels flies in to greet Velazquez’s sole surviving nude, The Rokeby Venus. The pair depicted in Morning Maids trace their lineage back to Francois Boucher. All of these old, august icons are punctuated by bits of modern-day static that take the form of inverted letters, dollar and cent-signs.