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KM Fine Arts Los Angeles Presents John Rusnak: Fear of Nostalgia

KM Fine Arts announces Fear of Nostalgia, John Michael Rusnak’s first solo exhibition at the gallery. Rusnak’s iconic series of six magnificent triptychs represent the culmination of more than 100 days spent in Cuba.

Los Angeles, CA, May 12, 2013 --( KM Fine Arts-Los Angeles, 814 North La Cienega Blvd, Los Angeles Announces
John Michael Rusnak's First Exhibition at the Gallery

Fear of Nostalgia
May 17, 2013 – July 12, 2013
Opening Reception: Friday, May 17, 2013, 7:00PM – 10PM

KM Fine Arts announces Fear of Nostalgia, John Michael Rusnak’s first solo exhibition at the gallery. Rusnak’s iconic series of six magnificent triptychs represent the culmination of more than 100 days spent in Cuba. Although entirely shot in Cuba, the images are universal symbols provoking a reflection on the necessity of equality and equity among people. As the Modernist movement viewed art as a guide for writing, Rusnak’s interpretations by the inspired writings of Plato, Gandhi, and Cuban José Martí became the basis for his exhibition. Fear of Nostalgia is Rusnak’s attempt to stimulate the viewer of humanity’s pervasive lack of historical reflection that seems to prevent a racially balanced, equal and unified existence for all mankind.

An excerpt from 'No Soil is Foreign' by Doug McClemont.
History and Humanity in the work of John Michael Rusnak

“As artists, we plant seeds,” states John Michael Rusnak, an individual whose longtime passion for the notion of a global humanity has given rise to this memorable exhibition. Ideas that might flower within the viewer are indeed sown throughout. Rusnak, with his knack for creating artworks that are simultaneously poignant and mysterious, has given us a kind of secret handshake, a gesture that he hopes will contribute to a race of beings who are fertile, durable and most of all equal…

The six magnificent triptychs in the exhibition “Fear of Nostalgia” represent the culmination of Rusnak’s more than 100 days spent in Cuba, though he sees them as timeless and even cross-cultural. Certainly the images have an inescapable political charge, but topical issues and the vagaries of international policy, profound as they are, were never his primary motivating force…

In Panterras Negras, we are presented with a man who John’s team nicknamed “Jimi Hendrix” because of his affection for the late musician. He sits on a parked motorcycle, while a lady friend sits contentedly in the sidecar. Where are they going? They’re traveling through their lives. They remain dignified despite the occasional, cryptic presence of oversized ‘fro wigs on their heads…

Rusnak is not content to create a strictly photographic portrayal of the lives of others. He is also an accomplished painter and draftsman, and graphite drawings are incorporated into the works. These elements are masterfully wrought and blended in nearly imperceptible ways within the images. Subjective perception is stimulated and challenged by yet another layer in the triptychs. The black-and-white photo-based works are printed through a 4-color process, then carefully juxtaposed with others from each series. Rusnak builds narrative upon poetic narrative… If photography provides evidence, Rusnak’s hybrid masterworks present a poetic sleight-of-hand that plays tricks on our eyes and massages our memories. Reality, he seems to be saying, is so elusive as to be beside the broader humanistic point being made...

In what might be described as a kind of miracle, the Cuban government is officially pleased with Rusnak’s creation. The artist donated the entire series to Cuba’s National Museum of Photography, FOTOTECA de Cuba, where it remains as part of the Museum’s permanent collection and has become part of the nation’s cultural heritage.

- Doug McClemont, April 2013
Doug McClemont is a New York-based writer, curator and critic.

To read No Soil is Foreign in its entirety, please visit

Many years in front of the camera exposed Rusnak to some of the most influential photographers of our time including Helmut Newton, Guy Bourdin and Chris Van Waganheim. John Michael Rusnak’s exhibitions have so far touched upon childhood nightmares with his Arlequins de Nuits, and the subject of religion in Duplicitous Icons. Under the mentorship of Arne Glimcher, owner of Pace Galleries, Rusnak photographically reinterpreted the sculptures of John Chamberlain for FLAUNT, creating cast abstract, sculptural, photographic landscapes. His fashion photography has also appeared on the pages of British Harpers Baazar, Magazine, Luxe-Immo as well as in campaigns and advertorials for Prada, Moet et Chandon, Cartier, Fendi, and Loree Rodkin Jewelry.

Additional exhibition dates for Fear of Nostalgia:
September 20 – December 21, 2013 KM Fine Arts, John Hancock Center, Chicago
March 2014 – (MuBE) Museu Brasileiro da Escultura, Sao Paulo, Brazil

For further information and visuals please contact
Anna Hollinger, Director and Managing Partner, 312.255.1319
Lissa Kivisto, Sales Director, 310.854.0540
Lauren Leving, Registrar 312.255.1202

Chicago Gallery Hours: Tuesday through Saturday 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Los Angles Gallery Hours: Tuesday through Saturday 11:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Twitter: @KMFineArts
Contact Information
KM Fine Arts
A.M. Hollinger

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