SoCiArts Productions proudly presents "feminine", Apr 10-17, 2009

Release Date: 

proudly presents
feminine April 10,  8 ~ 11 p.m. opening reception
April 11 & 12, 11 ~ 3 p.m. Apr 13~17 by appointment only

Los Angeles, CA, April 6, 2009.  Society of Cinema and Arts (SoCiArts) will proudly host the opening reception of feminine on April 10, 2009 from 8 to 11 p.m. at a gallery space on 11821 Mississippi Ave in Los Angeles, featuring eight of its member artists, from various genres and mediums of arts.  SoCiArts invites the community and leading collectors to join this event, showcasing these emerging and mid-career female artists including Jodii Tseng, Karen Fiorito, Kirstin Johnson, Kmax, Mila Charleston, Mona Shomali, Negin Karbassian and Shagha Ariannia. With over 70 original artworks at various price ranges, everyone attending feminine can go home a collector.

SoCiArts in continuing the promise to its member artists to promote their art produces this exhibition to create a platform for like-minded artists and art enthusiasts to connect with one another.  In conjunction with this event, SoCiArts also proudly promotes the Downtown Women's Center, providing hope and safe shelter to women without a home. Please visit, for more info about the center, its services, events and how you can help.

feminine will be featured on's Virtual Gallery, starting on April 11, for those individuals who are unable to attend the exhibition in person.

To join the opening reception on April 10 or for an appointment to visit the gallery during the week of April 13, please contact

For media inquires, please contact Bita Milanian at 310-746-5429 or

About the artists:
Jodii Tseng
Under the pseudonym ‘lilstickyrice', Jodii Tseng has been found wheat pasting the walls of L.A. at night and arousing audiences with her enticing displays of female sexuality.  Trained in fine arts and graphic design with a natural inclination towards the perverted and subversive culture, her art is of a rebellious nature, direct in its raw emotion, and aimed at challenging preconceptions while wowing you.  Jodii's pieces are multi-layered and textured environments that utilize a range of mediums to communicate ideas in a visual display that is fueled life experience. Working as a graphic designer in Los Angeles' entertainment industry, her professional design work is a display of meticulous perfection and superficial glamour. Wanting to be involved in the world community, she became a part of the underground art and socio-political print scenes of Los Angeles. A Burner at heart, her true passion lies in using art to fight the evil forces in the universe.
Karen Fiorito
Karen Fiorito is originally from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and currently resides in Los Angeles, California. She has exhibited her art nationally and internationally, and her work has appeared in such publications as Art in America, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Hustler Magazine, the LA Weekly, and URB magazine. In 2004, she was a recipient of a Change, Inc. Grant and in 2005, she received a grant from the Puffin Foundation for a billboard in Santa Monica, CA. Ms. Fiorito received her Master's in Fine Art in Printmaking from Arizona State University and her B.F.A. from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. She currently owns and operates her own fine art printmaking studio and publishing company, Hard Pressed Studios, which produces prints for such artists as Robbie Conal, Winston Smith and Mear One.
Kirstin Johnson
Kirstin Anna Johnson is a multi-disciplinary artist working both in the downtown Los Angeles area, as well as long involved in the Topanga and Decker School Road post-bohemian art scene of the Los Angeles Santa Monica Mountains area.  Involved in art since childhood, particularly through growing up among artist-family friends such as Lita Albuequerque, Peter Alexander, Lady John Dill, and Rory White.  Her own father, Jim Johnson, is one of the top artists in wood on the west coast doing purist and functionalist pieces, as well as doing much installation work for family friends, like Alexander and Albuequerque, and for galleries such as John Corcoran Gallery.  Flow and Ace.  Working in performance art, music, assemblage, word-art and conceptual works, as well as traditional media such as oil and acrylic painting, relief sculpture, and photography, Kirstin has also been long involved in radical inner-city art-activism, having worked for one year full time, at the Skid Row Lamp Art Project, working specifically with artists marginalized by homelessness, mental illness, and release from this country's penal institutions.  Equally at home in the extreme inner city and wilderness areas,  Her love and appreciation for the underground and urban street arts have also led her to closely working with a teacher at the Manual Arts school in the south central Los Angeles area. The project consists of connecting and bridging the worlds of local Los Angeles artists who display their artwork in various forms and mediums anywhere from the streets to gallery row with the school and the student artists introducing them through guest speaking, dialogue through the art/mural interface and workshops.  Kirstin has participated 5 times at the Burning Man Festival in the Black Rock City desert of Nevada and the green Music/performance and art Festival Lightning In A Bottle, as well as the art gallery in the We the People Festival of downtown Los Angeles.  Also working in commercial production, modeling, and stand-in work, Kirstin has worked with and for such artists as, Yuri Elizondo, Brion Topolski and Annie Liebowitz.  For the last year Kirstin has been spearheading the art/music exhibition space at 2323 EastOlympic Blvd in downtown Los Angeles.
KMAX was born Kelly Cadwallader in Denver Colorado.  She was raised in Sacramento California since the age of two.  California's progressive politics and diverse geography play a big roll in her work. Kelly is a conceptual artist with an emphases in sculpture, video and drawing.  She has shown all over California, New York City, Rotterdam and Dusseldorf. 1995 she  received a Rockefeller grant for the inaugural show Cultural Contamination at the renowned La Panaderia Arts Space in Mexico City. While living Korea her name was changed to Kelly Max and KMAX was born. In 1998 she moved her studio to the Downtown section of Los Angeles to the area that has become the Artist District. Recently she premiered video in the LA Heros video show at the Egyptian Theatre in Los Angeles. Currently she is raising her daughter in Napa, CA while studying herbalism. She received her BFA from SFAI, San Francisco.
Mila Charleston
Mila Charleston graduated from Savannah College of Art and Design in 2003, with a B.F.A. in illustration.  Her work primarily consists of oil, acrylic and collage. 
Mona Shomali
Mona Shomali was born in Los Angeles, CA in the year 1979, the same year of the Iranian Revolution. While pregnant, her mother fled Iran out of fear of persecution for her non-Muslim religion (Baha'i Faith), followed months later by her father. In her early years, she was raised almost exclusively with the Iranian Diaspora, not learning English till her first day of kindergarten. Eventually, the young family moved to the San Francisco bay area. Mona was raised in the east bay, attended university in Santa Cruz, and lived and worked in San Francisco. A few years later, she moved to New York with her husband and completed a Masters program at NYU.  Her first real rush as an Artist was when she was 14 years old and was introduced by her high school art teacher to the live nude drawing group, a weekly collective that was organized by the Berkeley Artists Guild. She became a regular, experimenting with how to sketch and paint the human body in charcoal, watercolor and oil mediums. Painting was always an extremely personal way of resolving the contradictions and frustrations of living between what felt like clashing cultural rules for women and men. More importantly, it became a way to confront the media images of Iranian women who were black shrouded, shapeless, and sexless- as if having no desire, voices or volitions of their own.
The Iranian/ Persian "women" in the paintings became surreal and symbolic, transforming ethnographic taboos and traditional assumptions of both cultures into a more complex self defined identity.  The contradiction and extremes within the narrative of being Iranian-American are explored: rebellion and submission, freedom and shame, tradition and modernity, public and private, vulnerability and pride, ownership and selflessness, oppression and liberation. The live model subjects of the paintings have been various Iranian friends and relatives over the years.  As far as influences, Mona's art has been most inspired by the (California) bay area figurative movement (1950-1965), and Iranian or Iranian- American art. Of the bay area figurative artist movement, the individuals that made the deepest impressions were: Nathan Oliveira, Elmer Bischoff, David Park, Richard Diebenkorn, Joan Brown and Manuel Neri. As far as other figurative artists, European artists such as Matisse and Gauguin and Latino artists such as Kahlo and Riviera were also very influential. While Iranian royal art during the Qajar Epoch (1785-1925) fascinates in its flat ornamental style, many other contemporary Iranian-American artists tell a narrative story in an ethnographic language that other members of the modern and global Iranian Diaspora can relate to. Her most admired contemporary artists are: Shirin Neshat, Ali Dadgar, Marjane Satrapi and Taraneh Hemami.
Negin Karbassian
Born and raised in Iran, Negin Karbassian studied graphic design in high school and photography in The Center for Young Filmmakers in Tehran. At the age of 16 she attended Parson's School of Design in New York City, studying flash animation. One year later she moved to California and after residing in Los Angeles, she became highly interested in Photo Journalism and Anthropology. She attended Brooks Institute of Photography and received her degree in 2003 in the same fields. Since her graduation, Negin has been traveling around the world as a photographer, focusing on people of all nations and their respective cultures. Souvenirs from Iran in 2008 was Negin's second exhibition. She had a highly successful show in Tehran in 2005. She lives and works between Tehran and Los Angeles.
Shagha Ariannia
Shagha Ariannia is an Artist based in Southern California who works primarily on paintings, multi-media installation and experimental video.  Born and raised in Iran till age of seventeen and moved to U.S. since then. Shagha holds a bachelor degree in the Studio Arts from the university of California, Irvine.  Shagha is primarily interested in the question of representation, issues of Identity, hybridity and political possibility in relation to identity and social construction.  Shagha's paintings are influenced by Gerhard Richter's abstractions and Persian poetry, which is laid in Farsi text in the paintings. These texts are poems that are bleared, smeared over and deconstructed to words in a way to function as forms and shapes rather than language. The spaces created in her paintings are neither present nor past but only an imaginary places existence in the gap between past and present. The gap that happens between to places in process of transferring.  Therefore the text in form of shapes plays as a sign of past, remembrance and identity." In my paintings I'm trying to create a bridge between the east and west, the modern abstraction raised from west, along with the ancient Farsi language. It can be read as merging of tradition and modernity. " Shagha said," I have been dealing with the use of text in my paintings in many ways and trying to convey them as signs and symbols rather than something linear and obvious".