Harif Guzman
Dying to Live
February 23 – May 4, 2013

ARTIST INFORMATION:
Current Works

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Deborah Colton Gallery is pleased to present the Texas debut of artist Harif Guzman with his solo exhibition Dying to Live. Dying to Live opens Saturday, February 23, 2013 with a reception for the artist 6:00 to 9:00 pm.

Harif Guzman, born in Venezuela, spent much of his childhood surrounded by his mother and sisters and was influenced strongly by his father (a printer and typesetter). As a little boy in 1980, Guzman came New York City. Guzman calls New York not only home, but his canvas and inspiration. The inspiration of his work derives from mechanical reproduction and the hands-on kill-based technique that refuses the deadening effects of iconographical conformity. Further inspiration is the result of Guzman’s earliest experiences of image making and the honest craft that he encountered working in his father’s print workshop as a boy. The subsequent trajectory of his path from shop worker, street-smart skate punk, busboy, and valet, to the art gallery, involves an alchemical shift as humble cast-offs become Fine Art gold in his studio.

Guzman’s work explores the idea of behavior and human transformation. The reclaimed materials Guzman employs are not just physical elements but deeply rooted second hand imagery that characterizes the contemporary urban existence. At times portraying urban life as simply an assemblage of humanity,Guzman simultaneously forces the concept of a deeper, in-depth individuality. This individuality is subtle and purposely consumed within Guzman’s works.

Relevant themes of power, death and money become romanticized as Guzman exposes human addictions within culture extremes. He collectively explores the concept of behavior adjacent to obsession yet individually and aggressively exploits it through visually capturing commonality and the elemental functions that drive us. Circumventing the traditionally approved arc that takes an artist from art school to art gallery, Guzman’s unorthodox route from the basemetal street artist to the gold of the accomplished work centers his attention in a stylish, contemporary urban idiom.

Harif Guzman’s works have been included in numerous international exhibitions in London, Tokyo, Sydney as well as throughout the United States in New York, Miami, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.

Deborah Colton Gallery is founded on being an innovative showcase for ongoing presentation and promotion of strong historical and visionary contemporary artists world-wide, whose diverse practices include painting, works on paper, sculpture, video, photography, performance and conceptual future media installations. The gallery aspires to provide a forum through connecting Texas, national and international artists to make positive change.