Apocalypse | Alison OK Frost

Alison OK Frost was born and raised in Los Angeles, CA. She began her art training early, attending and graduating from the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts in 1996. She went on to get a BA in Art from UCLA and an MFA in Fine Art from the School of Visual Arts in New York. Frost currently lives and works in Oakland, CA. She has a studio in the Compound, a local artist-run gallery and workspace, and is a monthly contributor to the space’s Art in a Box program. She is a regular participant in Drawing Wednesdays at Levende in Old Oakland. She also co-administers and –curates at MacArthur b arthur, a space devoted to showing visual, sound, and performance art by Bay Area artists. Before getting married in 2010, Frost showed under the name Alison Offill-Klein.

Portrayals of the atrocities of warfare, such as that of German Expressionism or Goya’ s etchings from a century before, speak to me. The work is often grotesque and horrific, but in a particularly concrete way; this is I think a reflection of the fact that the European people of these times had a much more concrete experience of war than I have. War became a part of their everyday landscape: beyond battles witnessed, there were bombed out buildings, soldiers and civilians bearing scars or missing body parts. Now it seems there is so much more distance, and especially since the internet, so, so many more images. For me, the terror and horror of life all gets kind of tangled up—-what is “real” is made up as much of horror movies and newscasts as from what I immediately experience. This remains true even if I’ m a direct participant.

Not too long ago, a neighborhood fixture I didn’t know personally got shot, along with his dad, across the street from my house as I sat by the window in the front room. My husband made a field dressing out of his sweatshirt and tried to control the bleeding until the paramedics got here (longer than you might think). And afterwards, he said that lifting up his shirt, the gunshot wounds had looked just like in the movies. For a while after that I would jump when I heard loud noises or sirens, but then we started watching DVDs of The Wire, and I got re-acclimated to the sound of gunshots and so was able to continue with my daily life. Experiences like these—the juxtaposition of real life horror and the seemingly mundane experience of watching horror on television or online—inform my work. More literally, my work of late is a combination of portrayals of scenes I have staged and “found” images from news sources, old magazines, snap shots, movie stills, etc. I think of them as a collection of images that might make up the opening credit montage to the vaguely post-apocalyptic film that runs in my head. (Not the storyline, mind you, perhaps I’ ll get to that someday.) On the other hand, I would hope that they are open-ended, and possibly even archetypal, enough that a viewer looking at them could bring his or her own experience and meaning to them.

Learn about the artist at:   Alison OK Frost


by Alison OK Frost
VillaDuCarl Art Collection | Portland, Oregon
7″ x 5″
Purchased 2012

Purchased at  –   Art In A Box | Oakland, California
Contact the artist –   Alison OK Frost



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