In the opening and closing scenes of The Cranes Are Flying, a black and white Russian film, we see those very birds flying gracefully above, symbolizing spring, love, fall, and death. The movie, dramatic and lyrical, confronts the myths of war and reflects on our self-destructive nature. And it was the images of this film that I had in my mind while analyzing Peter Hristoff’s monotypes at the group show curated by Kenny Rivero at the Charles Moffett Gallery. The title of the exhibition is Hold On, Hold Me, which precisely conveyed my feelings about the body of work as a whole. The cranes portrayed here are black silhouettes entranced in a shamanic dance between bodies of men. Moving from one image to the next, the perfection, finesse, and grace of the artwork can be paralleled to the vases of ancient Greece. Loaded with erotica they spark the imagery of animalistic humanoid gods, mythology, and music. However, the emptiness of the negative space makes the viewer look deeply into his/her own experiences and find their own personal meaning. For me, it would be a scene from The Cranes Are Flying when the main character is dying and he sees a sunset, spiraling trees, and his bride, his love.
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