June 3: The Fourth Wall is pleased to present our fourth online exhibition in the ongoing series, From the Studio. The current show combines paintings and works on paper by two Bay Area artists, Sydney Cohen and Carlo Ricafort. Sydney Cohen's first language is color. She speaks it fluently and eloquently. She also has the remakable ability to give acrylic paint and pigment a physical, almost sculptural, presence. Carlo Ricafort's paintings, drawings and prints manage to be quiet and explosive all at once. These two artists have not met nor spoken together but their work seems to create an easy dialogue, which includes humor, fantasy, and a hefty dose of irony.
View the entire From the Studio series: I Devon McKnight and Manuel Angeja, II Nancy Youdelman and Victoria May, III Carrie Lederer and Kim Bennett, IV Sydney Cohen and Carlo Ricafort, and V Mel Adamson and Alexandra Uchida.
“So much of the time we are not really seeing color. Our brains make composites of colors, deciding for us to not focus on color, more to just take in general impressions, so as to navigate in the world and not get hit by cars or walk into trees. One doesn’t need to be an artist to experience the sudden awareness of color, as if the world just got turned on or tuned in and that it feels like an altered state. It makes us realize it is not how we usually operate. Yet color is happening around us all the time.”1 – Sydney Cohen
"My art deals with exile, and similar to Blues music, it’s a personal language and may not necessarily have a narrative or cultural signifiers." – Carlo Ricafort
About the Artists
Laying down layers of rich matte colors, and painting for months on each panel, Sydney Cohen's work uses humor and imagination to explore what we do and do not know about neural networks and the universe, both at the micro and macro levels. Her work embraces contradictions: The internal and the external, consciousness, unconsciousness and self-consciousness, and reason and empathy. She teaches painting, drawing and color at CCA, figure drawing at the Urban School of SF, and was an affiliate artist at the Headlands Center for the Arts from 2015-2018. When not painting and drawing, she looks at rocks, imagines what animals would say if they spoke English, and grows things.
Carlo Ricafort immigrated from the Philippines to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1985 where his family invested in a printing business. Self-taught in the graphic arts and offset printing, he pursued his B.F.A. in Pictorial Arts from San José State University in 2000. He has since exhibited at museums, numerous galleries and cultural spaces in San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Mexico, Thailand, France, Denmark, the Philippines, and participated in the collateral exhibitions of the XII Havana Biennial, Cuba. Ricafort is co-founder of the artist-run gallery, Random Parts in Oakland, California. He lives and works in San Francisco.