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Sandra Ramos

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For years, ARTnews has listed Columbus businessman and arts advocate Ron Pizzuti as one of the world’s top art collectors.

Recently, he decided to make his extensive collection of contemporary art accessible to the public. The Pizzuti Collection will officially open in the fall of 2012 at 632 N. Park St.

But, first, there’s “Teasers: Selected Works From the Pizzuti Collection by Women Artists.” The exhibit of 26 pieces by 20 artists, on view in the Miranova building Downtown, reveals the breadth and depth of Pizzuti’s collection and serves as a strong, appealing exhibit on its own.

The exhibition loosely examines a broad international swath of contemporary feminism, with no one style or medium dominating.

Cuban artist Sandra Ramos’ El Sindrome de Rapunzel (The Rapunzel Syndrome) features a young girl surrounded by a twisting braid of hair that becomes a strange, self-circling maze. The powerful piece speaks to the pain of navigating transition and growth.

American artist Kara Walker is represented with the video Testimony, which uses a non-threatening shadow-puppet show to expose the brutality, injustice and horror of slavery.

Synthesizing a symbiotic relationship between the natural and the man-made, Indian installation artist Ranjani Shettar is known for her intricate constructions that rely on unexpected materials. In Thousand Room House, she unites polyethylene sheets and cotton rope to produce what seems to be a living and growing organism.

Using her own image, American painter Joan Semmel boldly examines the female body, aging, femininity and the perception of beauty in Transformation.

Mexican-American artist Margarita Cabrera taps folk traditions in her sculptural constructions. In central Mexico, the act of covering a tree with small clay figures is a way of examining biblical origins and personal histories. In Study for Arbol de la Vida, Cabrera uses a gray John Deere tractor covered with small figurines to express the new realities that Mexican immigrants face working in American agriculture.

In her black-and-white photo Summer 1953, Iranian filmmaker Shirin Neshat examines women’s roles and experiences during major historical events. In 1953, an American-backed coup d’etat helped overthrow the democratically elected government of Iranian Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddegh. The political and cultural consequences of that event continue to resonate through both Iranian and U.S. culture.

Other strong contributions include abstract works by Japanese artist Hiroe Saeki, Taiwanese painter Suling Wang and German-Brazilian artist Janaina Tschape.

A wonderful show, “Teasers” anticipates great things to come.

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