Ajit Chauhan at the Jack Hanley Gallery

My friend Neil is both an extraordinary chef and an art collecting fiend. Over one of his epic cassoulet dinners, he introduced me to the fascinating work of Ajit Chauhan. This Kansas-born, San Francisco-based artist has been playing with the notion of reconstructing our perceptions of known objects, creating new ways of conceiving familiar forms.Ajit Chauhan from ReRecordAmong his works, my favorite are Chauhan’s erased album covers. By removing the big picture on the cover, Chauhan leaves you questioning not what this object was, but what it now represents. In his ReRecord series, you are left with an eery collection of eyes, hair, and errant limbs all floating on cream-colored backgrounds. But what is curious is that in the end, though you know these were once record covers, you are merely interested in what is left of what you may have once known. The origin is irrelevent.Ajit Chauhan, From the Pencil AreaThe Jack Hanley Gallery is now showing From the Pencil Area, Ajit Chauhan’s latest show largely composed of a new series of erased album covers. These works are a departure from what he had done in the past, as they delve further into the abstract. We’re no longer left with remnants of a human portrait, but instead are presented with meticulously composed geometric patterns. You can’t help but imagine that they’re a visual recollection of the sound the covers once represented. They’re a sight to be seen, and their beauty is only fully comprehended when viewed as a whole collection, exhibited in a single room.Ajit ChauhanCheck out the show at the Jack Hanley Gallery on 136 Watts Street. The show is up until April 2nd, so get there before it goes down! You can also see more of Ajit Chauhan’s work on his website.