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Hands-On Art

Paul Mardikian says he seeks to “create my own artifacts and tell my own stories” in pieces such as (left to right) Seed, Tears on Paper, Totem 4, and Desire Path. Photographs (portrait) by Autumn Nesbitt  & (artwork) courtesy of Paul Mardikian & Corrigan Gallery

February 29, 2012

Hands-On Art
Get a feel (literally) for painter Paul Mardikian’s latest creations during this Friday’s art walk

Gearing up for Friday’s French Quarter Art Walk? So are we! And we can’t wait to step into Corrigan Gallery to toast the opening of a new exhibit of works by Paul Mardikian. The senior conservator on the H.L. Hunley Project (whom we featured in the “Artist Profile” section of our January issue) has been painting since the late 1980s, and he’s developed a fascinating artistic process along the way.

Often working on wood panels, the French artist builds layers of paint that he then gouges, pushes, and slashes using a scraping tool, razors, and his bare hands. Pieces of copper, steel, tin, or zinc are sometimes incorporated into what he refers to as “sculptures.” And the best part? You don’t have to resist the urge to run a finger across them. “I want to encourage viewers to engage all of their senses. Our minds receive lots of information through touch. Feeling the texture of a surface is really powerful and can ignite your imagination,” notes Mardikian.

During the show, dubbed “Terra Mater,” you can look forward to getting hands-on with some larger compositions that Mardikian has been turning around in his mind for some time. “This exhibit is an opportunity for me to glorify my muse, Mother Earth,” he says.

For Amy Stockwell Mercer’s article on Mardikian, “Recreating History,” click here.

For more events to add to your weekend calendar, click here.

If you’re heading to the Charleston Wine + Food Festival’s Culinary Village, be sure to drop by the Charleston magazine demo booth. For a schedule of demos, click here.

Wed, 02/29/2012