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Chicago photographer Jason Lazarus creates photograms with Robert Heinecken's cremated remains

For Immediate Release

April 15, 2011

Contact: Jon Lapointe, Director of Communications
Phone: (626) 792-5101 x 134

Exhibition: Jason Lazarus: Gone
Curator: Calvin Phelps
Exhibition Dates: October 1, 2011-January 22, 2012
Opening Reception: Saturday, October 8, 7-9 p.m.
Location: Armory Center for the Arts, 145 N. Raymond Ave., Pasadena, CA 91103

Armory Center for the Arts is pleased to present Gone, an exhibition of work by Chicago-based artist Jason Lazarus in the Armory’s Pasadena Art Alliance Gallery. Organized by curator Calvin Phelps, the exhibition will be on display from October 1 to January 22. A free public reception will take place on Saturday, October 8, from 7-9 p.m.

Jason Lazarus’ work addresses ways in which memory and memorialization are communicated through the photographic image. In his Heinecken Studies, Lazarus created a series of color photograms using a portion of the cremated remains of the late conceptual photographist Robert Heinecken. Produced in a single studio session, the works appear as constellations or color-field abstractions. Lazarus’s portraits of William Eggleston and Wolfgang Tillmans honor two photographers from distinct traditions. Yet Lazarus is also clearly interested in the vernacular use of the photo. Images from the Orion over Baghdad series feature photograms of the titles of snapshots posted on Flickr by US soldiers of their tours of duty in Iraq (OLD_GLOR, novemberbombing).

In Lazarus’s work, we appreciate a “co-mingling” – the analog photogram (created by using the ashes of a seminal postmodern artist), the hybrid photogram (created by using text gleaned from the digital realm of Flickr). His artistic exercises are not without deeper political implications. Lazarus turns a keen eye to societal structures to understand how death and remembering function at a time of global crisis and conflict – and in a time of shifting technologies. He weaves dichotic thoughts into an intricately, imbricated whole.

Jason Lazarus (American, b. 1975) lives and works in Chicago. He had a retrospective solo exhibition; Your Time is Gonna Come, at Illinois State University in Normal in 2011 and an upcoming solo exhibition at the Nerman Museum in Overland Park, KS. His work has been included in the exhibitions On the Scene: Jason Lazarus, Wolfgang Ploger, Zoe Strauss, at the Art Institute of Chicago; Black Is, Black Ain't at the Renaissance Society, Chicago; and in Let Your Light In at Country Club, Los Angeles. Lazarus has received awards from the Illinois Arts Council, the Richard H. Driehuas Foundation, and Artdia. He earned his MFA in photography from Columbia College in 2003. Jason Lazarus is represented by Andrew Rafacz Gallery, Chicago.

About the Armory
The Armory Center for the Arts, in Pasadena, California, builds on the power of art to transform lives and communities through presenting, creating, teaching, and discussing contemporary visual art. The Armory Center for the Arts believes that an understanding and appreciation of the arts is essential for a well-rounded human experience and a civil community. The organization’s department of exhibitions mounts over 25 visual arts exhibitions each year at its main facility and in locations throughout the City of Pasadena.

Gallery hours at Armory Center for the Arts are Tuesday – Sunday, noon-5 p.m. $5 suggested donation. Armory members, students, and seniors are free. The Armory is easily accessible from the Gold Line Memorial Park Station in Pasadena. For information about Armory exhibitions and events, the public may call 626.792.5101 x122 or visit the Armory website at

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