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Santos y Otros Creatures

January 6 - February 10, 2010

Creativity Explored

San Francisco, CA

Saint Genesius by Gordon Shepard and
Serpent by Bertha Otoya © 2009 Creativity Explored.

Artists at Creativity Explored delve into the world of saints and creatures from a uniquely personal perspective, presenting artworks that are brimming with mythic characters and rich metaphors.

The belief in saints and creatures has been maintained for centuries, preserved through faith and romanticism. Saints and other creatures are often what people talk about when recounting a story, a fable, or a miracle that is born out of the traumas of reality. The purchase of a saint or "creature" is one of the ways in which people sometimes fortify themselves in the battle against pain, fear, loneliness and death. Throughout history, human beings have been attracted to and fascinated by the world of certain creatures. Creatures have been present in the myths and legends of most world cultures, which believed in the mystical powers of particular animals. The exhibition Santos y Otros Creatures reflects aspects of this vast pool of human belief through the artwork on view, in which creatures have been transformed from the ordinary to the extraordinary, and new visual narratives of saints and enigmas have been created.

Santos y Otros Creatures is curated by Victor D. Cartagena, artist, and instructor at Creativity Explored. According to Cartagena, his own upbringing informs his interest in this subject matter. He says, "How does the Catholic religion's definition of sainthood differ from that of the Bible? In Roman Catholic theology, the saints are in the heavens, whereas in the Bible, they are walking the earth. In the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church, a person does not become a saint unless he or she is canonized by the Pope or a prominent bishop, whereas for the saints that are created by the artists at Creativity Explored, there is no need for the benediction of a church or the certification of a religion. No authority is called upon to validate these very personal saints and creatures that our artists carry within their minds and hearts."

The exhibition is largely composed of prints and reflects the dynamic new and developing printmaking program that Cartagena initiated when he joined Creativity Explored a year ago. Printmaking has proved to be a breakaway medium for a number of artists at Creativity Explored, leading not only to the development of new techniques and heightened levels of artistry but also to bold explorations of new subject matter.

To learn more about this exhibition, you can read the press release here

See some great gallery installation shots in Ashcan Magazine.

Creativity Explored
3245 16th Street (at Guerrero Street)
San Francisco, CA 94103

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