Last Rites Gallery will open two solo exhibitions of new work: Endarkenment by Chet Zar in gallery one and The Unspoken by Ewelina Ferruso in gallery two.
Chet Zar was born on November 12th, 1967, in San Pedro, CA. His entire childhood was spent drawing, sculpting and painting. Zar’s interest in the darker side of art began in the earliest stages of his life. A natural fascination with all things strange fostered within himself a deep connection to horror movies and dark imagery. He could relate to the feelings of fear, anxiety and isolation that they conveyed. These are themes which had permeated most of his childhood drawings and paintings and are reflected in his work to this day. The combined interest in horror films and art eventually culminated into a career as a special effects make up artist, designer and sculptor for the motion picture industry, designing and creating creatures and make up effects effects for such films as, “The Ring”, “Hellboy I & II”, “Planet of the Apes” and the critically acclaimed music videos for the art metal band Tool. Zar also embraced the digital side of special effects as well, utitlizing the computer to translate his dark vision with 3D animation for Tool’s live shows and subsequently releasing many of them on his own DVD of dark 3D animation, “Disturb the Normal”. But the many years spent dealing with all of the politics and artistic compromises of the film industry left Zar feeling creatively stagnant. At the beginning of 2000 (at the suggestion of horror author Clive Barker), he decided to go back to his roots and focus on his own original works and try his hand at fine art, specifically painting in oils. The result has been a renewed sense of purpose, artistic freedom and a clarity of vision that is evident in his darkly surreal (and often darkly humorous) paintings. His artistic influences include painter James Zar (stepfather and artistic mentor), Beksinski, H.R. Giger, Frank Frazetta, M.C. Escher, Bosch, John Singer Sargent and Norman Rockwell just to name a few.
Ewelina Ferruso was born in Wroclaw, Poland in 1981. Her family immigrated to the US when she was just 3 years of age. Ewelina was always equipped with a pencil and paper. That dreamy space of endless possibilities was where most of her time was spent. Later, Ewelina attended Columbus College of Art and Design in Ohio and graduated in 2003. But, it was not until after college that she discovered a true treasure within herself… childhood. Her fascination for the energetic creative state she experienced at a young age led her to create her first collections of paintings entitled, “Onion Soup”. Onion Soup is a reflection of a girls vivid imagination and how she thrives in a world where the act of creating comes naturally. In exploring the realm of Onion Soup, Ewelina began to make connections to her current life. As she continues to paint, she is chronicling her own lifelong spiritual growth. Her greatest intention is that the energy she has put into each piece will also connect to the lives of others and cause somethings of greater magnitudes to occur.