The Corey Helford Gallery
Sixth Sense & Harmony With Material and Spirit
By Raven Moran
Located in a pocket of downtown Los Angeles near the famous Arts District and just further south of Little Tokyo, is one of the city’s latest premier New Contemporary art galleries, the Corey Helford Gallery. Established in 2006 by Jan Corey Helford and her husband, TV producer Bruce Helford, the gallery has cemented itself as an ever-evolving artistic force in the DTLA community as well as internationally. Their goal? To “support the growth of artists”—a statement simple and true and reflected in its latest two exhibits.
The first exhibit greets viewers just moments after opening the gallery doors. Appropriately titled, “Sixth Sense” is a worldly patchwork of six artists featuring Nigerian artist Arinze Stanley, Taiwanese artist Chen-Do Lee, London-based artist Chloe Early, Latvia-born artist Jana Birke, Indonesia-born artist RYOL, and Switzerland-based artist Zoé Byland. This first exhibit collectively embodies several style genres seen and felt as the viewers fill the 12,000 square foot radius.
Chloe Early’s new series “Phoenix” is the first set of paintings the viewer sees before continuing into the rest of the space. An adaptation of classic Western tropes flow seamlessly with modern-day depictions of Early’s take on the Greek mythological creature. Her use of warm red tones suggest this as well in each painting.
'Stata Mater' by Chloe Early
'Nantosuelta' by Chloe Early
From Early’s initial entrance, the viewer is allowed to wander in any particular order to the rest of the artists:
Chen-Dao Lee’s series “Romantic Romantic” recreates scenes utilizing the composition style of old master paintings. Lee creates small portraits of famous superheroes such as Batman and Wonder-Woman coupled together with a provocative twist touching on topics such as gender- issues and equality.
Jana Birke’s series has a strong, sexual visual narrative with her work focusing on the human body in its internal and external states. She uses the traditional oil painting on canvas which further adds to her own poetic visual autobiography.
'BFF #3' by Chen-Dao Lee
'Dreamer of Dreams' by Jana Brike
RYOL’s “Instant-Made” series is pop-art at its finest with its themes focusing on his love for western cartoons, comics and fashion. He states that “for each piece I learned about an issue, then took a stance on the issue.”
Zoé Byland’s “One Of A Kind” brings us back to classic vintage photography with her use of specific genres of art history such as film noir, graphic novels, and tattoos. Children are depicted in several portraits exploring ideas of social construct in behavior and language.
World-renowned artist Arinze Stanley Egbengwu presents a more realistic feel to his portraits on paper. The pencil to paper medium he crafted from a young age allows self-expression in harmony through what he calls his “three-P’s”: Patience, Practice, and Persistence.
'Love Maker' by RYOL
'Boy and Snail' by Zoé Byland
Image Arinze Stanley's installation
The second exhibit that is found in a separate, more secluded space of the Helford gallery is Miho Hirano’s “Harmony With Material and Spirit” series. Hirano’s latest work has captivated the contemporary art world with her portrayal of beautiful women whose physical features blend with the nature surrounding them. Blending sensuality and femininity with each dreamy oil-painting, it’s no wonder why this exhibit embodies a space of its own. It creates a pleasurable world for the viewer to step in and coexist.
'Dreaming' by Miho Hirano
The Corey Helford Gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday from 12:00PM to 6:00PM, with visiting hours being the same as gallery hours. CHG presents a diverse collection of New Figurative Art, Pop Surrealism, Neo Pop, Graffiti, and Street Art primarily influenced by today’s pop culture.