St. Amant’s work reveals the two major religious factions in his allegorical cartoon ninja series, “Nowhereland”. Identical in philosophy, but differing in aesthetics, the two faiths-Green Mountianity and Red Treeism- clash in a satirical propaganda war.
Everest’s work references disparate concepts, philosophies, and spiritual systems to create pseudo ritualistic drawings, paintings, and sculptures, that are reminiscent of a past or future civilization whose rights of passage, rituals and customs are at once vaguely familiar and impenetrable.
The opening will take place during the Downtown Fullerton Art Walk on Friday, May 4th, and will run until May 26, 2012.
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On Exhibit: May 4–26, 2012
In Jonathan St. Amant’s series, “Nowhereland”, there are two major religions: Green Mountianity, and Red Treeism. Any other faith is considered to be a blasphemous heathen construct. The followers of each are expected to be fiercely faithful. Their faith is frequently tested by the spiritual leadership; through spiritual retreats, demon “extractions”, and home visits. The two faiths frequently engage in bloody combat to promote peace. Each believes that the eradication of the other will result in a peaceful existence. The two major faiths are identical, except for differences in aesthetic tendencies, and a minor detail in each religion’s book: Green Mountain ninjas believe that the day after Nowhereland was created, the creator- Zjohr- climbed to the top of a green mountain to rest and get a view of His newly-created world. Red Tree ninjas believe that following the creation of Nowhereland, the creator- Zeavhjb- rested underneath a red tree to be among His creations and see His work up close. This exhibition features some depictions and artifacts of Nowhereland’s two major religions. (previous press on St. Amant/Nowhereland at PÄS Gallery, 2011)
Ritual codifies belief by connecting elevated ideas to the physical realm. It is at once completely illogical and ultimately powerful. Ritual has been a part of the human experience since our beginning and in this ever changing world it too will evolve. I synthesize rituals, methodologies and personal experience to make work that is seemingly purposeful, familiar, and yet aware of it’s irrational shortcomings. Tribal practices, worship, offerings, modern dooms day mythologies, 1980‘s florescent surf culture, Eastern philosophy, Biblical themes, shamanism, and the California New Age movement, to name a few, act as guiding influences. Emblematic objects representing travels, or certain periods in my life are woven into these pseudo ritualistic pieces. The paint sometimes literally, holds these disparate themes together. For example in “This Bush is Burning” a fluorescent bush without vegetation rests on top of a pedestal painted with a post apocalyptic landscape. The reference to the biblical story of the Burning Bush hints at the moralities of Judeo-Christian beliefs while toying with the name by sexualizing it. Central to the piece is a single grain of sand and the bush, each collected at solitary beaches in Bali and Baja respectively. They reference personal moments of great insight and celebration. This offering/holy relic/sculpture is the bi-product of a celebratory ritualistic action made by a fervent believer who is plagued with the knowledge that their endeavors are futile.