SOUTHFIRST 60 North 6th Street  Brooklyn, NY  11211




Uneven Reeds

June 10 – July 12, 2015




Sofi Brazzeal is the anti-slacker. She works like a demon, attacks her work hard, and makes swift progress. Her art is alarmingly good, protean and big time. Her drawings carry a lot of ideas—about history, gender, mythology; their themes are cruelty, surprising tenderness, carnality, and self-delusion. In some of the drawings, the independence and indifference to propriety, combined with clarity conveys a pitiless, Sadean approach to life. Other subjects are treated with a humorous indulgence. The drawings are by turns satirical, poignant, or delicately lyrical. In a larger sense, they embody an ethos of transformation—the transformational grammar, or illogic, of art. An older woman is transformed into a fluted Pan; a basketball player morphs into a satyr, and the satyr into George Washington; Katherine Hepburn is turned into a massive grill of teeth, and so on.


None of which would matter if it werenŐt for the quality of the drawings themselves. Brazzeal draws with a very sure hand that, proof of its art, is occasionally allowed to go off the rails. In the classical manner, her lines are first of all marks—and therefore shapes in themselves; they delineate, and bring pressure to bear upon an edge, which in turn describes form. This is how it is done. She has great range: the specific velocity and density of a line creates energy; it gives off either malevolence or forbearance, and all that lies in-between. Soft crayon in hand, Brazzeal is extremely self-confident; her line is almost rapacious; she fills up the page with brio, often with three or more styles and mark-making tools in a single drawing, the differences in tone made to matter. She uses distortion like a master—that is, to reveal a true perception. Stylistically, BrazzealŐs drawings range wide, but always come back to her own hand, her own eye. Ensor, R. Crumb and Picasso principally, along with Donatello, Michaelangelo, Watteau, Picabia all make an appearance—the drawings are sophisticated. But they are not amalgams—they are themselves. BrazzealŐs drawings are new. 

                                                                                                                                                            --David Salle      


Brazzeal completed an MFA in studio art at NYU Steinhardt in 2014, and lives and works in New York.                


SOUTHFIRST, founded in 2000, is located at 60 North 6th Street in Williamsburg, Brooklyn between Wythe and Kent Avenues. Gallery hours are Sat. and Sun. from 1 - 6 PM and by appointment. Subway: L train to Bedford Avenue. For more information, please contact the gallery at 718 599 4884 or