Drawing on images of collective violence in the media, Michael Garguilo investigates how groups of men are brought together and torn asunder, and how quickly camaraderie can disintegrate into turmoil.
Garguilo extracts human figures from their surroundings thus emphasizing the latent awkwardness and ambiguity of physical aggression. Without a specific backdrop it is difficult to discern aggression from intimacy; a tussle may become an embrace and protest may transform into a parade.
In Garguilo’s paintings, what was once the frightening becomes slapstick. This absurdity broaches a distressing subject in a more comfortable way, providing an entry point to confront violence rather than escape it.
Excerpt from an interview by Gina Iacobelli
Michael Anthony Garguilo received his BFA from Southern Methodist University in Dallas in 2006 and completed his MFA in painting at Boston University in 2009. His work has been exhibited in New York, Dallas and Boston. Garguilo is also the Assistant Director of Big Chimney Gallery in Chicopee, Massachusetts where he curated the exhibition The Plan is the Body in 2009.