Night and Day
Pellas Gallery is pleased to present Night and Day, a duo exhibition featuring Boston based painters Percy Fortini-Wright and Masha Keryan. Works by these artists will touch upon themes of humanity, spirituality and the cumulative experience, all while visually complimenting each other’s different artistic styles.
Acclaimed for his work in a variety of media, Percy Fortini-Wright’s style inhabits the space between abstraction expressionism and graffiti art. To create these new works, Percy vigorously applies a combination of spray paint and oil paint in a rather loose and rhythmic motion. In doing so, he gradually builds up a surface, creating an asymmetrical composition depicting an infinite network of lines and forms. Throughout his process he continues to destroy that of his original plan of seeking to find the balance between chaos and order, resulting in an abstract radial work of art that evokes the forces of a greater energy.
Percy believes that all human beings have a creative spirit, therefore making the official start to his artistic career undefined. He states that with being surrounded by artists and musicians throughout his childhood, it is hard to distinguish a specific time when he began his journey, especially if time is infinite. It wasn’t until his adolescent years when he first became introduce to the art of graffiti by one of his closest childhood friends. What started as a creative outlet soon became a successful career as Percy’s works became actively in demand by both private and public collectors following his showcase at the Boston Center of Arts in 2003. His form of artistry continues to effortlessly blur the lines between classical painting and graffiti art. However, he does not consider himself a graffiti or street artist but rather identifies as a technician of letters, articulating self-expression through the parameters of letters on various surfaces.
The main inspiration behind Percy’s body of work has been continuously sourced from music, rhythm, rhyme, all with a mystical touch. He states that when discussing the musical genre of hip hop, the rhyming in particular is one of the most complex, rawest forms of expression that has ever existed from his perspective. He relates his process to that of a patchwork of elusive hard to find samples, flying, colliding, and flowing through space and time through rhyme.
Belonging to a new generation of figurative painters, Boston based artist Masha Keryan has become most recognized for her works that, minimal in color and often large scale, explore internal psychologies through classical postures and the relationships between subjects.
For her first exhibition at the gallery, Keryan will be showing vivid anthropomorphic depictions that abstractly reflect upon desire and the human condition, alongside paintings drawn from her past experiences living in USA, Armenia and Russia. These multifaceted works expand upon her stylistic evolution while thematically remaining similar through her ongoing analysis of humanity. Throughout her early works, Keryan often painted small-scale compositions that expressed a sense of intimacy through the relationships of colors. Since then, she has experimented with different materials and styles including classical portraiture, landscapes, still lives, abstraction, expressionism, minimalism, and conceptual art. She now prefers to deviate from the traditional style of oil painting and instead strives to manipulate thick, gestural layers into every crevasse of her figurative compositions. The abstracted figures within her works remain anonymous, as they are characters of her visual language, gathered to pass on certain ideas or emotions. Keryan states that she strives to create these androgynous beings with minimal color and varying personas, as an attempt to answer her idealistic question of what it means to be human.
Percy Fortini-Wright completed both his BFA and MFA from the Art Institute of Boston at Lesley University. While in his youth he wrote graffiti, most active during the late 1990’s, becoming a technician of wild style graffiti letters, tags and bubble letters while simultaneously he evolved as a traditional painter of scenes, abstraction, and portraiture to his characters the Children from Beyond. In graduate school, he mentored with artists Paul Rahilly, Ken Beck, Paul Goodnight, Vanessa Platacis, and Dike Blair. His inspirations range from painters like Anders Zorn to John Singer Sargent, to wild-style graffiti pieces and tags.
Percy has participated in many graffiti events including Meeting of Styles in the Bronx, NYC, Under Pressure in Montreal, Canada and Urban Basel in Basel Switzerland. His work has been selected in a juried exhibition by Jonathan LeVine at Parlor Gallery, NJ in 2013 and in 2014 a group exhibit at the Copley Society juried by Paul HA. His work has appeared in a number of art publications including New York Times, the Boston Globe, Boston Herald, Juxtapoz, ArtScope, Annie Selkie's Fresh American Style, American Art Collector and the centerfold of the Improper Bostonian magazine, PBS (Open Studios with Jared Bowens) and Nominated Boston’s Best award by the Improper Bostonian in 2015. Past projects include work commissioned by Flank Steakhouse in Waltham, MA and by Adidas for the Boston Marathon which was featured in Hypebeast and Sports Illustrated.
Masha Keryan received her BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design in Boston, MA in 2016. During her adolescent years, Keryan received academic art training while living in Post-Soviet Armenia (Yerevan) and continued to foster her love of painting by studying under various native artists. Throughout her apprenticeship, she learned the styles of classical drawing, watercolor and portraiture. This experience would soon come to shape her artistic style, instilling in her the strict, fundamental traditions of art.
Work by the artist has been recently featured in the virtual exhibition Whether We Like It, on Arloopa (2021), Alone Together, at Flowering Rock Gallery (2020), Shimmer, at Boston Center for the Arts (2020), Areacode Art Fair, Boston, MA (2020). Past large-scale projects include work commissioned by Dirty Water Dough in Boston, MA (2020) and by WeWork for their 31 St James Ave office (2020).