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Spirits rooted in animism often exist independent from definitive religious forms. They have an intersecting ontological premonition, an everyday existence and an invisible realm populated by the presences of ghosts, spirits, ancestors and demigods. A particular deflection encompassing spirit-journeys in this realm, is the shamanistic practice in Siberia. With its involvement in the cult of the dead, of ancestors and mountains and in rituals of animal sacrifice, the deepest message of Siberian animism is to balance man and nature.

Lena Wolek conceives artworks in the Siberian spirit, works that straddle the distinctive concepts between soul, spirit and nature. In their primal magical-ritual thoughts, humans form souls, while spirits dwell in the abstract sentiment relating to a diverse spectrum of natural phenomena, as in the common dream experience—flying existentially independent of their bodies, soul visitations ancestors, friends or the unknown spirit. Wolek plays out these conceptual scenarios in applied ceramics, woven fabric, and folk-derived paintings and drawings mediating the remnant overtones and folklore memories into 21st century sarcasm, irony and humor: www.lenawolek.com. (KG)

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<p>Max Presneill & Kio Griffith from ARTRA Curatorial is a volunteer organization for the implementation of new modes of exhibition, locally, nationally and internationally, that feature artist-led emerging platforms and opportunity based interactions and community building via social practice type events. Founded in 2009, the group has instigated large scale art events and exchanges, as well as the alternative art fair Co/Lab, throughout Los Angeles and has new projects being presented in China, France and UK in 2014, as well as the continuation of their MAS ATTACK series of events both in LA and other US cities.</p>

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