Klaus von Nichtssagend is pleased to present Amna Asghar’s first New York solo show in our front gallery, from March 31 through May 7. The show will consist of a series of multi-panel paintings circling the exhibition space in a near-continuous line. An opening reception will be held on Friday, March 31 from 6-8PM.
The subject matter and imagery of Asghar’s paintings are culled from items in her parents’ home in Michigan. Asghar enlarges and reproduces images from her mother’s Pakistani Digest magazine pages, including beauty product advertisements and love stories written in Urdu with a sprinkling of English. These “pages” are presented alongside similarly enlarged graphics from covers of her father’s cassette tape collection and scenery from the Walt Disney films of her childhood. Each panel functions as a slice of information within the larger exhibition; on the whole we have a sense of the subject matter, but gathered through slivers of different cultures, interests, geographies, and generations. Asghar has arranged the work into multi-panel groupings thinking of them as sonnets or couplets, or music sampling and remixing. Her arrangement of images creates a viewing experience similar to flipping through a book, or unfolding a cassette tape sleeve.
The paintings are made with a mixture of screenprinting, airbrush, and acrylic paint applied by brush. The printing dot of the original digest magazine advertisements is emphasized through the screenprinted translation of pages to canvas. Airbrushing allows for Asghar to mimic the slick look of Disney film cells, as well as to create a series of gradient abstractions. Painting with a brush reveals the artist’s hand, demonstrating the work is not solely cut and paste; it echoes Asghar’s voice, creating a personal and resonant woven resolution to the work.
Amna Asghar (b. 1984, Detroit, MI) holds an MFA in painting from the Rhode Island School of Design and a BFA from Michigan State University. She has recently exhibited at Harmony Murphy Gallery, Los Angeles; “Nasty Women” at the The Knockdown Center, Queens; Whitney Houston Biennial, New York; Hawkeye Crates, Brooklyn; Bruce High Quality Foundation, New York; The Bowery Poetry Club, New York. In 2016, her work was included in “80 x 80” at the Mint Museum, Charlotte, NC. Asghar was featured in the 2017 Focus section of the Armory Show in New York, a solo booth presented by Harmony Murphy Gallery curated by Jarrett Gregory. Her work will be included in an upcoming group exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver in 2017.