‘Fantazzical Beings’ arrive at Dollhaus II gallery

The exhibit by Brian 'Soigne' Wilson opens Friday, May 21

A new exhibition has opened at the Dollhaus II art gallery in Bayonne, featuring Brian “Soigne” Wilson, one of the earliest artists involved with the original Dollhaus gallery.

The Dollhaus started in Williamsburg, under the Williamsburg Bridge and was extremely well attended for six years until rent increases and gentrification kicked the artists out. The gallery was forced to travel to unknown areas to continue operations, eventually reopening as Dollhaus II, an “outsider gallery” in Bayonne.

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Soigne’s exhibition opens on May 21 from 2 to 10 p.m., his first solo retrospective. The show will run until July 4. The reception will host limited attendees, following COVID-19 precautions.

The Dollhaus II is at 23 Cottage Street, open Thursday through Sunday from 1 to 8 p.m. For more information, visit www.xdollhausx.com or call 201-360-0894.

Meet the artist

Soigne is a multidisciplinary, modern pop artist and is an original member of the first ‘happenings’ and ‘art events’ produced by Dollhaus from 1999-2001 before the first Dollhaus was opened in July of 2001.

Soigne does paintings of New York City nightlife ‘Drag Queens’ and ‘Club Kids,’ having been a part of that scene for decades. He is inspired by people who step outside the norm, with his husband being his biggest muse. Soigne also does self portraits.

During a difficult period in his life, Soigne began painting his ‘Fantazzical Beings.’ He has created thousands of characters over his career. Some of Soigne’s ‘Fantazzical Beings’ will be in attendance at the opening.

The exhibit conjures elements of Surrealism, Dadaism, Expressionism and Fauvism, with his vivid expressionistic and non naturalistic use of color. He uses the whitest whites and the blackest blacks.

Soigne was inspired early on by sideshow banner art that he would see in traveling carnivals. According to Dollhaus, his art is like a funhouse, “spooky and fun” and “joyful and contagious.”

There is a dreamlike quality reflected in Soigne’s re-creation of childlike imagery. He likes to bring otherworldly divas to life with his paintings, installations and performances.

Soigne’s, whose creativity knows no bounds, according to Dollhaus, has been handpainting clothing since his high school days.

For updates on this and other stories, check www.hudsonreporter.com and follow us on Twitter @hudson_reporter. Daniel Israel can be reached at disrael@hudsonreporter.com.

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