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Raffi Kalenderian (B. 1981)
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Raffi Kalenderian (B. 1981)

Spirit Guides and Sunflowers

Details
Raffi Kalenderian (B. 1981)
Spirit Guides and Sunflowers
signed, titled and dated '"Spirit guides and Sunflowers" Raffi Kalenderian 2008' (on the reverse)
oil on canvas
60¼ x 98¼in. (153 x 249.5cm.)
Painted in 2008
Provenance
Black Dragon Society, Los Angeles.
Acquired from the above by the present owner in 2008.
Exhibited
Los Angeles, Black Dragon Society, Raffi Kalenderian, 2008.
London, Saatchi Gallery, Painters' Painters, 2016, p. 64 (pp. 64-65).
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VAT rate of 20% is payable on hammer price and buyer's premium

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Tessa Lord
Tessa Lord

Lot Essay

Executed on a dramatic scale, Raffi Kalenderian’s Spirit Guides and Sunflowers oscillates between figurative and abstract registers. Two zebras stand amidst a field of sunflowers, their stripes creating a dizzying optical dialogue with the striated curtain of trees in the background. Born in Los Angeles and trained at UCLA, Kalenderian creates portraits and landscapes, using seemingly innocuous subjects as vehicles through which to explore the vivid, psychological power of paint. Variously compared to artists such as David Hockney and Jonas Wood, he relishes the experimental properties of the medium, often using found imagery as well as working from live subjects. ‘I learned how to make oil paintings by going to the art store and buying oil paint, medium, turpenoid and then just going crazy in the studio’, he explains. ‘In the beginning I would use oil paint with a drawing mindset, and eventually I figured out how to glaze and stain, add seasoning and texture. Sometimes the paintings take two years and change a million times as I search for something that works. Other times a painting will be done in a day.’ 

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