Antonio Adriano Puleo
Birds and Beasts

January 6 - February 10, 2007

Cherry and Martin announces its second solo exhibition of new mixed media paintings by Antonio Adriano Puleo.

Antonio Adriano Puleo’s paintings and works on paper draw their motifs from a variety of art historical sources including Persian and Indian miniatures, Japanese prints and the work of Florentine master Fra Angelico. Puleo’s supersaturated Pop line work, vibrant color and dizzying perspective are laid down in oil and acrylic paint, vintage fabrics and an array of paper types. The range of colors, textures and forms, both representational and abstract, are used to convey such themes as personal solitude, a longing for connection and the sense of a higher being.

Birds and Beasts is a metaphor for spiritual dichotomy—heaven and hell, good and evil—one that suggests such forces are not combative, but harmonious, even integral, to each other. The painting “Birds and Beasts' (from which the title of the exhibition is derived) features two tigers and a bird, bisected by a sickle and two arrows. The overtones of predator and prey are apparent, but so is the strong sense of the two living side-by-side. The painting, “We Belong Together,' presents two owls and two birds, derived from different cultural representations, nestled together in a loosely organized landscape united by a bar of intense color and a sprouting flower. Though the initial impression of these works is one of immediacy and unity, the deft complexity that underlies these ambitious paintings reveals that despite their first appearance nothing is quite what it seems.

Puleo has shown widely in Italy, with exhibitions at the Flash Art Museum in Trevi and the Fondazione Antonio Ratti in Como. In the past year, Antonio Adriano Puleo’s work has been featured in such exhibitions as The New Collage at Pavel Zoubok Gallery (New York, NY); LA at Lucas Schoormans Gallery (New York, NY); and Combatants & Correspondents, a two-person exhibition with David X. Levine at Dust (Las Vegas, NV). In 2005, articles and reviews of Puleo’s work appeared in Art Review, The New Yorker, Nylon, LA Weekly and the Las Vegas Sun. Puleo graduated with an MFA from the University of California, Los Angeles, in 2003. He lives and works in Los Angeles.