ABOUT THE ARTIST Keith Perelli b. 1968 1994 MFA, Painting and Sculpture, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH 1991 BA, Painting and Printmaking, University of New Orleans, New Orleans, LA Keith Perelli is a visual artist working in painting, printmaking and drawing. His figurative work explores a variety of social political and personal issues. He is a native of New Orleans, Louisiana and teaches Drawing and Painting at NOCCA, New Orleans Center for Creative Art. He has participated in numerous, national and international invitation and juried exhibitions. He has exhibited his work at d.o.c.s. Gallery in New Orleans, Found Gallery in Los Angeles and Steve Martin Fine Art in Miami. Perelli is a recipient of the SURDNA Foundation’s Arts Teacher Fellowship, a Louisiana Division of the Arts Fellowship, and a Foundation Ratti Arts Fellowship. He has received five professional development grants from the Louisiana Division of the Arts. He was recently awarded a Downtown District Development /RTA commission for a public works project on Canal Street in New Orleans. In addition to seven solo exhibitions at d.o.c.s. Gallery, his work was selected for the Foundation Ratti “Corso Superiore,” Como, Italy, “Alan Kaprow Invitational,” Milan, Italy, “University of New Orleans 3 Person Alumni Works on Paper,” Innsbruck, Austria and “Louisiana Artists,” Alexandria Museum of Art, LA. He was also featured in “Culture of Queer,” Leslie Lohman Gallery, New York, NY and “Katrina, Catastrophe and Catharsis,” at the Fine Arts Center, Colorado Springs, Colorado. Most recently, he was awarded best of show for the “22nd September Competition,” Alexandria Museum of Art, Alexandria, LA. The artist's website: www.keithperelli.com IN HIS OWN WORDS For the past fifteen months, I have explored monotype as a means of experimenting with embedded collage and drawing within the structure of a printed painting. Embracing the unforgiving nature of the process and the unexpected were liberating aspects of this challenging medium. Included in these works are ideas in these works explore; healing as it to caner or mental illness, exploring race through the filter of one’s familial and societal experiences and complex sociological and environmental issues surrounding youth violence and crime. Creating images as monotypes became an opportunity to synthesize real and imagined elements of the figure, abstraction, nature and science due to the ability to layer and record nuances of varied mark-making tools. I found myself interested in contrasting the mathematic structure and strength of plant specimens to aspects of their vulnerability including disease, predators and cyclical mortality and progeny. The collection and integration of litter within the figures and negative spaces might also suggest touches of irony. Cigarette packages, condom wrappers, beer cups, candy papers and a fast-food crown for example, seemed reflect urban neglect and warn of indulgence. I used these objects and specimens to suggest a correlation between environment and human physiognomy. I attempted to draw from life and observation when possible. Venturing out into the neighborhood for source materials and inspiration was part of that reinforcement. Through these assemblages I sought to contrast strength and vulnerability, beauty and neglect, empathy and conceit. Within each image I sought to capture tension between human survival and our physical and mental weakness. Presenting these ideas as dissected specimens requiring visual analysis might encourage the viewer to see past conditioned responses to a deeper level of shared commonalities, experiences and feelings.