Zio Ziegler, The Event Horizon, 2017, Mixed Media On Canvas, 45×35 Cm

Daniel Gibson | Zio Ziegler

Picasso Post Punk

curated by Luca Beatrice


As Brian Eno said, anyone who listened to the Velvet Underground had the temptation to form their own band. Likewise, anyone who has grappled with painting, even once, has imagined being Picasso. There’s no escaping the fact that the genius from Malaga turned painting inside out like a sock, laying the groundwork in his long career to influence later generations, in a process that has yet to be interrupted, though over 40 years have passed since his death.
After having crossed the European avant-gardes, Picasso “landed” in America, influencing its artistic production just as much as Marcel Duchamp, from the surreal visions of the initial period of Gorky, De Kooning and Rothko, all the way to the “first authentically American artist,” Jackson Pollock: prior to discovering the dripping technique that made him famous, the maudit talent so admired by Peggy Guggenheim focused on signs and strokes steeped in the style of Picasso.
End of story? Far from it. Picasso has long been a presence in Street Art, in an alternative, irreverent version that pays tribute to absolute creative freedom. Even the director-photographer Larry Clark has investigated the contemporary character of Picasso’s universal work, giving the title Punk Picasso to a famous exhibition in 2003 (and a book that is now impossible to find). In that period Roberta Smith wrote in the New York Times: “The show’s title aligns his efforts with the 20th-century paradigm of histrionic autobiographical aesthetics. Dream on.”
The present impression starts here. Are we all Picasso? The answer comes from two artists, showing at Antonio Colombo Arte Contemporanea. The first, Zio Ziegler is an old acquaintance (so to speak), while the other, Daniel Gibson, is a new entry this season.
Born in 1988 in California, Zio Ziegler, after his first show in Milan in 2014, has gained growing acclaim, become a reference point of American alternative culture. His new output shifts even further towards an erudite type of painting, aware of its means, whose models go beyond the realm of citation to become true style, true language. Paintings like Back from the Grand Utah II, If you stand on your hands have you lifted the earth? make the legacy of Picasso explode, obviously filtered
through the language of Pollock, in a surreal world of colors and signs, while the series Red Ground makes another transformation towards urban culture visible. These works have never been shown elsewhere, and were made in 2017.
Daniel Gibson was born in 1977 in Yuma, Arizona, though his background is also mostly set in California. He is showing canvases and works on paper for the first time in Italy, works that reveal an original graphic sign, to a great extent in black and white, almost taking their cue from the Picasso of Guernica, as in Bull Fight, the ironic Her Studio Shot and the erotic Mina and Mao Mao. Original, intriguing work, still to be discovered, which once again emphasizes the need for an erudite background for anyone who wants to come to terms with painting today. For those who still believe in it.
Hence Picasso Post Punk. Against any form of academism, agreed. But the revolution is made by studying, not by improvising, both Marx and Gramsci explained. And they knew a thing or two.


Opening Thursday 23 November, 18.30
On view until 25 January 2018
Tuesday to Friday, 10.00-13.00 and 15.00-19.00
Saturday 15.00-19.00


Zio Ziegler, was born in 1988 in Mill Valley, California. He lives and works in San Francisco. He studied philosophy at Brown University and painting at the Rhode Island School of Design.
Selected solo shows. 2017: Meta Species, Ochi Gallery, Sun Valley, Idaho, CA. 2016: The Hall of Mirrors, solo installation at Untitled Art Fair, Miami Beach, FL; Bernard Gwilliam & The Quantum Modernism, Jules Maeght Gallery, San Francisco, CA; To Arrive at the Truth, Ochi Gallery, Sun Valley, ID. 2015: Painting is the Pattern, Jules Maeght Gallery, San Francisco, CA; The Creative Dialectic, Artists Republic 4 Tomorrow, Laguna Beach. 2014: Chasing Singularity, Artists Republic 4 Tomorrow, Laguna Beach, CA. 2013: The Infinite, Gallery 81435, Telluride CO; Chaos/Clarity, Ian Ross Gallery, San Francisco, CA. 2012: Lost Illusions, Project Gallery, Hollywood, CA.
Selected group shows. 2015: group show, Wall Street Gallery Robertson, Los Angeles, CA. 2013: Winter Group Show, Stolen Space Gallery, London, UK; Rise Above, Las Vegas, NV; Neu-Folk, Lequivive Gallery, Oakland CA; Confluence, 5024SF Gallery, San Francisco CA, Complex Gallery, Portland, OR; Santurce es Ley, Museum of Contemporary Art Puerto Rico, San Juan, Puerto Rico; Young Americans, Singapore, Indonesia. 2012: FlashBang, Project One Gallery, San Francisco, CA; Primeval, Carmichael Gallery, Culver City, CA; Chromatic: An Undeniable Experience, Roll-Up Gallery, San Francisco, CA.

Daniel Gibson was born in Yuma, Arizona in 1977. He presently lives and works in Los Angeles. This is his first exhibition in Italy, at Antonio Colombo Arte Contemporanea. Selected group shows include 2017: Always Be Drawing, S.D.S.U. Gallery, Calexico, CA; Tryin’ to stay on the bull, New Image Art, Los Angeles, CA; Night Sweats, Current Projects, Miami, FL.; Wouldn’t It Be Nice If We Could Dream Together, Diane Rosenstein Gallery, Hollywood. 2016: Always Be Drawing Vol 1, O.N.O., Los Angeles, CA; Global Times Painting Painting To, Half Gallery, New York, NY; End of Semester, BBQLA, Los Angeles, CA; Fruit, LALAland, Hollywood, CA. 2015: You got to come from somewhere, you don’t just fall out of the sky, O.N.O., Los Angeles, CA; The steak flew over the rainbow, BBQLA, Los Angeles, CA; LFPC Group Show, Daniel Rolnik Gallery, Santa Monica, CA.