Tag Archive | Art Gallery

Warriors of The Apocalypse Series By Brian Sperry

Five Robot Mannequins
All Photos By Gail

Chicago is a fabulous city and home to one of the most beautifully curated art museums (The Art Institute) in the world. That said, it definitely does not enjoy a socially vibrant art scene that is equivalent to that of NYC — with its vast number of galleries in Chelsea, the LES, Midtown and Uptown. While the NYC art scene hosts a weekly (Thursday) night of opening receptions in galleries across the city, Chicago has one such evening per month, which is called Second Friday. Taking place in the Chicago Arts District (also known as Pilsen) Second Fridays Gallery Night is a monthly evening of opening receptions at the galleries and artists’ studios along South Halsted Street. If you’re a tourist and have the chance to attend Second Fridays only once, the one studio you must absolutely must not miss is House of The Apocalypse.

Four Warrior Mannequins

More of a studio showcase than a traditional gallery, House of The Apocalypse is where you’ll find an impressive and visually engaging collection of wildly embellished Sci-Fi-themed, mannequin-based sculptures known as the Warriors of the Apocalypse, which are designed and compiled from found objects by artist and gallery owner Brian Sperry.

Chrome Robot Mannequins

The Warriors have a backstory, courtesy of Sperry, as follows:

The year is 3095, a post-apocalyptic world. Man and machine unite to form a hybrid super soldier to fight against tyranny and oppression perpetrated by governments, corporations, and banks that have destroyed the planet. The Warriors spread truth and light in a futuristic world where humanity is fighting to survive. In the darkness, we are light. We will stand and fight. We are the Warriors of the Apocalypse!

Mohawk Mannequin

Sperry also offers his Artist’s Statement:

The visual elements of my figurative sculptures takes abstract human forms and gives them an acid bath in the surreal. The compositions attempts to displace the viewer and prompt them to question their own cognitive dissonance that is a pervasive part of what is destroying our society. The reconceptualization of mechanical found objects and the human form exudes hybridism and trans-humanism, the next wave of human evolution

Pink and Yellow Warrior

This juxtaposition of objects and the body attempts to give the viewer an interactive experience and encouragement to take a stand against imperialist scum who are determined to act as slave masters over the entire planet. Each figure is a Warrior embodying specific aspects of the spirit of revolt against the system. My work can me summed up in one slogan: Death to Tyranny!

Four Warriors

House of The Apocalypse is located at 1908 South Halsted Street, Chicago. It is open to the public every Second Friday of the month from 6-10 PM and by appointment. A suggested donation of a few dollars is requested to photograph the sculptures. Worth it.

Seven Mannequins

Advertisements

Vandal Restaurant Launches Pop Art Gallery in its Vestibule!

Vandal Pop Gallery
Image Source for Above Photo. All Other Photos By Gail.

Opening an art gallery inside a restaurant may not be an entirely original idea, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t happen more often. In fact, I think it’s a spot-on idea whose time as arrived! In a thrilling and logical partnership, TAO Group and Pop International Galleries have joined together to create a new art gallery in the vestibule of Vandal, one of the coolest contemporary pop art-themed restaurants and lounges in New York City.

Front Gallery Walls
Art by Dom Pattinson (Left) and Flore (Right)

It’s worth noting that Pop International Galleries’ home base is located just a few doors down the street from Vandal, and the Pop gallery inside Vandal features works by a select handful of popular street artists that the gallery represents. Along with original artworks by UR New York, Sean “Layercake” Sullivan, Flore, Dom Pattinson and RESO, a portfolio of ten very affordable, signed and numbered limited-edition prints by this group of artists are on exhibit and available for purchase.

Pop Signage and Skull Print
Sean Sullivan’s Skull and Roses Signed Print

Redesigning Vandal’s vestibule entry as an art gallery perfectly reflects the restaurant interior’s decorative theme, as its walls feature large scale, site-specific murals and framed artwork by Street Artists from around the world. To celebrate their joint venture, Vandal and Pop held a fun launch party and yours-truly scored an invite. Yes! This event marked my first visit to Vandal, although I have been in the space during its previous incarnation as The General, an Asian restaurant by Top Chef contestant Hung Huynh, and I was also  there many times when it was home to Crash Mansion, a night club and live music venue. Somehow, Vandal manages to exceed either of its predecessors when it comes to serving up a good time. Let me show you around a bit.

Icy Grape Bunny

Once inside the restaurant proper you will find this guy, Icy Grape; an 11-foot tall breakdancing bunny custom designed for the vaulted entry hallway by Rockwell Group. The Bunny’s Icy Grape color is a reference to the discontinued Krylon spray paint color of the same name, which I understand is still coveted by the street artist community. Guests are encouraged to pose with Icy Grape for the Instagram feed, but you may not touch or crawl on him.

Crystal Decanter Light Fixtures

I explored every room of Vandal and took photos of all of the cool fixtures and artwork. I love these pendant lights that hang above the main bar, which are made from cut crystal liquor decanters. Gorgeous!

Stairwell

This array of porthole lights are installed against graffiti-covered walls of the stairwell between the restaurant’s main and lower levels. The arist is Apexer.

Tristan Eaton Mural

Vandal has a massive main dining room, which makes it an ideal destination for hosting any gathering from an intimate date to a huge group Birthday celebration! There’s lots of cool stuff to look at as well, and it is like eating in an art museum.

Tristan Eaton Mural Detail

Here is a detail of the mural seen above, which is by Los Angeles-based artist Tristan Eaton. His stuff is all over NYC. If you look closely you can see that the mural is painted against background of gold-painted shelved books.

Dining Room Face

This concrete relief wall sculpture and the one seen directly below bookend the dining space. They are by Portuguese graffiti/street artist Vhils (aka Alexandre Manuel Dias Farto). Very, very cool.

Dining Room Face

Dining Room

Wine Bar

The evening’s festivities took place in the lounge adjacent to the main bar as well as a roomy front lounge area. Featured artworks by the Pop-up aritists were exhibited alongside permanent works in the space.

Flatiron Building
Art By UR New York

Graffiti Art
Art By Flore

Robots Art
Art By Sean Sullivan

Triptych Left

This lovely lady, and her friend below, are part of a triptych mural by Hush.

Triptych Right

Wine Glass and Napkin

This might be a good time to mention that Vandal also features the delicious cuisine of Chef Chris Santos, select items of which were served at the event.

Pizza

Wild Mushroom Pizza, yum.

Poke Bowl

Poke Bowl with fresh, sushi-grade salmon and tuna – excellent!

Shepard Fairy Mural Bar

The front lounge features two wall murals by globally famous pop artist Shepard Fairy. His style is instantly recognizable.

Shepard Fairy Mural

Angel Mural
Angel Mural by Eelus

Thanks to Vandal and Pop International Galleries for very fun evening! I can’t wait to visit again when my friend Mary has her Birthday party there in just  few weeks!!

Vandal is located at 199 Bowery (at Spring Street), New York, NY 10002. For more information, please visit www.vandalnewyork.com.

Vandal Pop Post Card