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As Funny As Brain Cancer

February 5 through March 11, 2000


Fredericks Freiser Gallery (formerly known as Jessica Fredericks Gallery) is pleased to announce an exhibition of new work by Christopher Chiappa. This will be the artist’s second one-person exhibition in New York. Recently, Mr. Chiappa was awarded a commission by the R.J. Reynolds Company to redesign the cigarette packet for Camel Cigarettes. The limited edition packet is available at special locations throughout the United States.


In his photographic and video work, Christopher Chiappa sets out to accomplish tasks. He documents the progression of an undertaking from beginning to end, or he examines its completion in a manner that highlights the flurry of movement that proceeded it. Either way he defines his efforts through the passage of time and the labor of procedure. Whether his assignment is meager (such as walking through a subway turnstile), or complex (burying himself up to his neck in the backyard of his childhood home for a series of landscape/color studies),  Mr. Chiappa displays a combination of manic energy and the workaday pathos of getting the job done. Alone with the details, he plugs away, from graceful movement to lugging exertion odyssey of sorts.


Clearly these actions are set up as metaphors. Themes ranging from childhood memory, spirituality, death, and desire play out in specific, often domestic settings (pictured in one piece is the artist’s bedroom while in another is a recreation of Van Gogh’s room at Arles.) His three-dimensional sculptures are usually known objects transformed by hybrid, and resonate in much the same way.  A chair becomes a crucifix. A water cooler turns medicinal and not at all helpful. Here movement is implied yet every bit as isolating. An object has been altered. We do not pretend that the chair or the cooler have morphed or evolved. They are not real world manifestations. Rather the viewer understands that the artist has intervened, insinuated himself, and begun his work.


Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 11am to 6pm. For further information and/or photographs please contact the gallery by telephone at (212) 633-6555 or fax at (212) 367-9502.