Mr. Krisztian Debuts Solo Show At Palm Avenue Pop-Up

Arts & Culture


12 Palm Avenue transforms this weekend into a modern art gallery for the debut solo exhibition of the Sarasota-based artist known only as Mr. Krisztian. Entitled Mr Krisztian: Exordium, the show opens Saturday, January 21, with an artist reception at 7pm.

Featuring near 20 paintings, many large-scale, adorning the freshly painted white walls of the dimly lit space, the work ranges from the abstract to the figurative to that magical place in between, never losing Krisztian’s distinct and dramatic flair for color. Largely eliminating the mid-tones in many of his pieces, the contrast between deep darks and blazing lights instills a sense of narrative energy to drive the eye across the canvas again and again.

Heavily textured, thick layers of accumulated paint give each painting a visible heft and a weight to match its subject, such as in the intricate and striking composition, Angelic Destruction of a Beginning. For some of his smaller works, Krisztian employs a process he will not divulge to prime his canvas and achieve that particular feel.

For Krisztian, much of the process is instinctual. With no formal training, he picked up a paintbrush at age 30 and the work began to flow out of him, first copying the works of greats like Monet and Cezanne before graduating to his own compositions. “I’ve got these images in my head and I’ve got to get them out,” he says. “I just see them all the time in my mind’s eye.” And between a full-time job and preparing for Exordium, the images have been piling up. “I haven’t touched a paintbrush in two weeks,” says Krisztian, “which is very frustrating.” With some paintings in the show taking as long as a year and a half to complete, he usually has more than one to work on.

“I call him a purist,” says Richard Pellicci, Krisztian’s representative and organizer of Exordium, “because too many people in the contemporary world are not painting—not really bringing brush to palette to canvas—and there’s always some sort of gimmick.”

Mr. Krisztian puts it a bit more succinctly: “The work itself will say everything.”

Mr. Krisztian: Exordium opens 7pm on January 21 at 12 Palm Avenue, next to Palm Avenue Fine Art, and is expected to run through the end of the month. Saturday will also feature an opening reception with the artist in attendance.

Pictured: Selections from "Exordium." Photo by Wyatt Kostygan.

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