Arts & Culture

Konstantin Kakanias's Drawings Are a Window Into the World of Style

The illustrator's exhibition is open in Los Angeles.
IMAGE "BUNNY MELON" COURTESY OF THE ARTIST AND GAVLAK LOS ANGELES
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It’s very hard to categorize the work of Konstantin Kakanias. Painter or illustrator? Humorist or truth-teller? While we wait to make up our minds, we can certainly agree that the work is funny and intelligent in equal measure. It is also visually irresistible, with a naïve style that nods in the direction of Herge and Cecil Beaton and Christian Berard. There is plenty to enjoy here. But Kakanias also has the gift of presenting smart things in frivolous disguises, of getting at the heart of a matter. He’s got everybody’s number.

Kakianias, who lives and works in Los Angeles, belongs within the narrative of sophisticated people (mainly of British or European origin, a la David Hockney) who have never for one moment looked down on California and instead use it as a source of visual energy.

The show currently at Gavlak consists of commissioned works on paper from Kakanias’s five year stint as in-house illustrator for T, The New York Times style magazine. Fashion is a dominant theme, but the real point here is that mirth and a gimlet eye can be deployed to denude any subject of snobbery, and investigate it—architecture, the position of a dog on a sofa, or the act of sunbathing in Paris.

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Konstantin Kakanias: “The Times” is on view at the Gavlak Gallery in Los Angeles at 1034 North Highland Avenue, until September 8.

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DÉJÀ VIEW (VAUX LE VICOMTE)


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THE BIBLIOPHILE’S 401(K) (STACK OF BOOKS)


FOUNTAINS OF YOUTH


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THE EXHIBITION IS OPEN AT THE GAVLAK GALLERY IN LOS ANGELES UNTIL SEPTEMBER 8.


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This story originally appeared on Townandcountrymag.com.
* Minor edits have been made by the Townandcountry.ph editors.

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