| Visage |
The Doppelgänger is a fiend of myth, an apparitional double that, according to folklore, attacks and consumes its human look-alike unless destroyed on first contact. San Antonio-based artist Michael Velliquette takes this dark phenomenon and flips it on its ass, churning out a campy, lighthearted body of work entitled "Get Into the, Who?," on view at the Cactus Bra.
Velliquette transmutes the idea of duality imbedded in Doppelgänger mythology, rewriting the tale as a modern parable of the search for self-identity through self-reflection. He sees his past and present self as fractured, a gestalt splintered by a form of temporal bilocation - a condition that is, thankfully, reversible. For the artist, this means rejoining his cultivated professional countenance and his kitch-infused, 1980s-driven adolescent self.
| GET INTO THE, WHO? |
Through October 31
106D Blue Star, Bldg. B
The mobiles cast gentle, drifting shadows atop neighboring artwork, cleverly intermingling each successive representation of the self, creating shadow play central to the installation. The floor-to-ceiling dimensions of Visage, constructed from colored string and small, white circular stickers, create an ominous human shadow form on the gallery's far wall, momentarily recalling the darker aspects of the original Doppelgänger myth.
| The Bilocator, maquette, detail, 65 x 14 x 14 inches, paper, Xerox print, thread, wood, glue, latex |
Any presentation that admits the use of puff paint is somewhat jarring in the white-cubed context of an austere gallery setting. But much of Velliquette's body of work involves such notions of camp, specifically in the context of queer identity. That theme lingers in his current work, but "Get Into the, Who?" reads as much as a metaphor as it does as the visual manifestation of a personal coping strategy. •