Lisa Alonzo, Cash is King at Claire Oliver

Gold Nuggets and Toilet Paper
Gold Nuggets and Toilet Paper (All Photos By Gail)

Well, the summer is over and the Chelsea Galleries are back in full swing with lots of exciting art to see. One of our long-time favorites, the Claire Oliver Gallery, has a new show up that is not only beautiful to look at but which also deals with a subject that is very topical.

In Cash is King, artist Lisa Alonzo revitalizes a long standing tradition of depicting currency and its role in our visual culture. Alonzo uses her signature satirical voice to pose questions on our current economic climate in a postmodern context.

Gold Nuggets and Toilet Paper Detail
Detail from Gold Nuggets and Toilet Paper

To create these works, Lisa Alonzo uses a pastry bag filled with acrylic paint with which she lays down a series of dots and dashes, fine crosshatched lines and scrollwork, mimicking the look of an engraver’s printing plate.

Gold Nuggets and Toilet Paper Detail
Detail from Gold Nuggets and Toilet Paper

Intermingled with the political figure’s portraits are bits of now-worthless banknotes, such as this 25 Billion Dollar note from Zimbabwe.

Cutpaper 2
Cutpaper 2

In the above piece, the notes are cut and arranged into colorful diamond shaped designs: monopoly money laced with devalued currencies from around the world are reduced to decoration.

Cutpaper 2 Detail
Cutpaper 2, Detail

Alonzo’s fascination with America’s commodity culture and the significance of the contradictions of our chosen leaders is recontextualized in the current climate.

Here are a few of our favorite pieces from the show:

Cut Paper Study 2
Cut Paper Study 2

Black Friday
Black Friday (Ulysses Grant, Fifty Dollar Bill)

Very Popular with Himself
Very Popular with Himself (Mao Zedong, Chinese Yuan)

Money Jenga
Jenga Game with Currency-Wrapped Pieces

Gold Bills
Gold Plated Currency

Gold 5 Dollar Bill
Gold 5 Dollar Bill (Detail from Above Set)

Cash is King, Lisa Alonzo’s second solo exhibition with Claire Oliver, is a very fun show and if gallery owners Claire and Ian are in the gallery when you vist, they are vey friendly and always happy to tell you more about the art.

Lisa Alonzo: Cash is King will be on Exhibit Through October 17th, 2015 at Claire Oliver Gallery, Located at 513 West 26th Street, in the Chelsea Gallery District.

Not Popular with the Locals
Not Popular with the Locals

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