The work of Paul Anagnostopoulos catches your eye from the wall. That was obvious walking through the Open Studios event for New York City's Hunter College last month.
And it makes sense. The artist's acrylic and oil paintings are saturated in vibrant colors that demand attention. But the work does much more than shout from the wall.
In his artist statement, Anagnostopoulos says his "process is a constant attempt to put the hypothetical vase back together again. I aggregate various histories, beliefs, and symbols as a way to explore mythological desire and melancholy."
The work is often narrative, combining references from Classic Grego-Roman art with the kitchy-camp of beach towns and the art found there. He paints idyllic paradises, creating settings for queer storytelling where queerness has often been in the subtext.
"I engage mythology, cultural motifs, and religious rituals as an apparatus for my own catharsis," he says. "My thought process and references function rhizomatically, with layers of significance on both universal and personal levels. Ultimately, the works celebrate queer storytelling.
Paul Anagnostopoulos (b. 1991 Merrick, NY) is an artist working in acrylic and oil painting. He graduated Summa Cum Laude from New York University in 2013 with his BFA. He interned at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, Italy during the 2013 Biennale.
Paul has completed 10 acclaimed artist residencies in the states and abroad, most notably the Vermont Studio Center (Johnson, VT), the Wassaic Project (Wassaic, NY), and the Association of Icelandic Visual Artists (Reykjavík, Iceland). He presented solo exhibitions at the Leslie-Lohman Project Space (New York, NY), GoggleWorks Center for the Arts (Reading, Pennsylvania), and 405_Gallery (online). Paul’s work is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art Archives and Library, the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, and Yale University. His work has been featured in Artnet News, VICE, and Friend of the Artist.
Paul is currently pursuing his MFA at Hunter College in New York, NY.