Sculptor Zadik Zadikian - Artweek.la - October 2012
Armenian born sculptor -Zadik Zadik has left has left an indelible mark on the global arts landscape. With an impressive portfolio spanning some three decades, his work has been a focal point of many pivotal international venues.
Solo shows at the esteemed Tony Shafrazi gallery in both New York and Tehran, and countless others internationally, from Los Angeles to Paris and Israel serve as testament toe Zadikians //quality and appeal.
From Italy and Dubai to Los Angeles and New York and beyond. Zadikian has a range of international collectors and has been profiled in a range of media outlets from to the Village Voice, New York Post and others.
Zadik was a prominent fixture in the New York artscene during the formative eighties showing with the likes of Keith haring and Basquiet and managed by Tony Shafrazi. His tormultuous relationship with the then top flight gallerist was widely profiled in the likes of The Village Voice and New York's Post society spreadsheet Page 6 in the 1980s.
Having attained such success and reveling in the dynamism of New York for most of his adult life, Zadikian wasn't content resting on the laurels of his glory days. After a move to LA and taking a sabbatical travelling and raising his family, Zadik has returned to his passion, which his next show set for later this year with Maloney art Los Angeles.
Zadikians formal career as a sculptor began in the late sixties when he studied at the Art Academy of Erevan, South Armenia and post graduate courses in Italy and Turkey From there he worked as an assistant to greats such as Richard Serra in the mid 1970s.
Zadikian's work defies classification. His sculptural work is by definition representational and embodies a leaning towards figurativism, yet he prefers to be known as a formalist.
During his seventies and eighties era, Zadik developed a fascination with using gold leaf and electroplated bronze and Hydrocal as a medium to coat his sculptures. This work comprised gilded interior installations and minimal stacks of gold-leafed brick. These fetishized objects embraced the mystical powers of gold, recalling Egyptian, Assyrian, Persian and Helenistic cultures.
While some pontificate his use of the material is indicative of some bacchanalian obsession with excess and opulence. Zadik is keen to underscore his use of gold leaf (not solid gold), its use is more symbolic rather and indicative of an obsession with opulence or its precious qualities.
Rather than being simply ostentatious, or indulgent, Zadikian uses it more as a tool, a metaphor. His use of gold explores metaphysical and symbolic concepts such as alchemy, timelessness and universal forces
In turn, Zadik has likened gold and its application in his art to the supernova phenomenon. Extremely luminous Supernovae cause a burst of radiation that often briefly outshines an entire galaxy, before fading over several weeks or months.
"Gold is a timeless material - its not just an immediate trendy thing ---- most art does stem from the economy-- New York has more money essentially
Zadik's current series "Bold Gold," encompasses figurative work inspired by themes of eroticism and sexuality. Erotic images of buxom thighs, buttocks and breasts recount visions of traditional fertility symbols or the romantic classicism of African tribal art or ancient Greece.
The work also triggers visions of The prehistoric Venus of Willendorf, while other male oriented pieces touch on the concept of Carl Jung's association with himself, 'the phallus always means the creative mana, the power of healing and fertility'
Linked to this notion of the self and introspection rather than external observation and exploration of the 'other,' Still there is still no strict adherence to such concepts, Zadikian is merely exploring , a precocious realm of his own.
While the viewer might be ensnared by assimilating themes of lust and greed for the sexualized gold coated figures, Zadikian isn't confined to such perception. He reveals, " this work is a way of freezing his emotions and conveying a story."
Zadiklian is ever the protagonist, provoking his audience by exploring sacred cultural and social mores. Of his erotic series he confides, "I am trying to create an experiential piece for the viewer. These female figures try to reach the areas where humans are liberated rather than conditioned, possibly stemming from the sexual projection of my being."
Written by Craig Stephens
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