“Shape Shifters” is a metaphorical representation of the lives of queer individuals, showcasing their resilience and strength in navigating a world that often seeks to limit their identity. Abbati’s paintings are a celebration of the beauty and diversity of the queer community and their ability to shape-shift in order to find their place in the world.
Through his art, Abbati creates his own metaverse of the queer community. The exhibit features a collection of figure studies, each one showcasing a unique aspect of the queer experience.
Opening reception is Friday, March 3rd, 5pm to 9pm. Shape Shifters: Queering the Metaverse runs through Saturday, April 29th // Schlomer Haus Gallery, 2128 Market St., schlomerhaus.com, Gallery Hours: Tue – Sat 12-6pm, and by appointment;
San Francisco Artist Joseph Abbati to Open Solo Art Exhibit “Shape Shifters: Queering the Metaverse”
15 February 2023 – San Francisco, CA
Schlomer Haus Gallery is excited to present Joseph Abbati’s solo exhibit, Shape Shifters: Queering the Metaverse. This exhibition is a portal into Abbati’s own metaverse, where his avatars and queer identity transcend the chains of heteronormativity and reclaims its power.
As an emerging space that offers the potential for greater representation and inclusivity for marginalized groups, including the queer community, the metaverse provides a platform for individuals to express themselves in ways that may not be possible in the physical world. With the ability to customize avatars and create virtual spaces, LGBTQIA+ individuals can explore and express their gender identity and sexual orientation in a more comfortable and accepting environment. Abbati’s figurative paintings are a reflection of this, looking at our biases and preconceptions of queer identity. His tondo paintings, circular studies of metamorphosis, offer a surrealist glimpse into the shape-shifting experiences of queer individuals, daring us to recognize the beauty in nonconformity and embrace diversity as the lifeblood of our existence.
Infused with Abbati’s background in graphic arts, each photo-like rendering in these paintings creates a new meta-world, a metaverse where meaning is rooted in the essence of queerness. Through a series of studies, three to four paintings each, Abbati invites us to embark on a journey of exploration to discover the possibilities for constructing a reality not dictated by the confines of a heteronormative society.
Join us at Schlomer Haus Gallery, March 3, 2023 from 5-9pm, where Joseph Abbati’s Shape Shifters: Queering the Metaverse offers a conversation of what our own metaverses may hold.
“TRANS AWARE” is an exhibit I curated along with KT Siebert showcasing twenty-four San Francisco Bay Area artists to celebrate Trans Awareness Week at the office of the Senator Scott Wiener in the State of California Building, San Francisco.
The artists come from diverse backgrounds and include trans, queer, non-binary, and cis-gender artists. Each work of art brings together trans awareness through historical, personal, representational, or abstract art.
Ten artists, including me, installed our work at Third Space/Art Fuse SF November 11-13, 2022 for Open Studios. I paid homage to the previous occupants of this space, Eros Sex Club SF, with a erotic installation from work of 2019-2021.