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 Frank Magnotta

Grand Optimist

May 21-July 3, 2009

Opening Reception: Thursday, May 21, 6-8 pm


Derek Eller Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of new drawings by Frank Magnotta.


Creating imaginary architecture comprised of disparate elements from contemporary culture and personal experience, Frank Magnotta makes monumental graphite drawings.  For this exhibition, Magnotta has mined several sources for his structures.  For example, "Century 21" and "Petfood Angels" are inspired by the newspaper USA Today from which Magnotta gathered an array of logos, graphics, and headlines and then reconstituted them into new structural frameworks. As such, these works provide a layered portrait of our information-saturated society which, like an amusement park fun house, is at once, seductively thrilling and horrific to behold.   In another, more autobiographical piece entitled "Grand Optimist," Magnotta begins with a logo which was ubiquitous in his hometown of Grand Rapids, MI. This emblem, an abstract take on the city's iconic public sculpture by Alexander Calder, becomes the foundation for Magnotta's architecture. Filling out the composition with other recognizable signs and symbols from his childhood, Magnotta presents the quintessential semiotic structure, infused with both personal meaning and that which is universally resonant.


Frank Magnotta lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.  He has had solo exhibitions at Cohan and Leslie, NY, and his drawings have been featured in group exhibitions at museums throughout the United States.  This will be his first solo show at the gallery.


Derek Eller Gallery is located at 615 West 27th Street, between 11th and 12th Avenues. Hours are Tuesday - Saturday from 11am - 6pm.  For further information or visuals, please contact the gallery at 212.206.6411 or visit