"Schrödinger's Menagerie" at A. E. England Gallery

Daniel Funkhouser, a painting graduate from ASU, is known for his bright paintings, nude-and-luchador-mask exhibitions, and his band Treasure MammaL, in which he dances in a silver unitard.

Needless to say, this guy isn't shy. And his show won't be either.

Funkhouser explores alter egos, sexuality and dualities in his first venture as a curator for "Schrödinger's Menagerie" this month at the A.E. England Gallery with an opening reception this Friday night.

The work featured in the show -- including pieces by Andrew Hadle, Ingrid V. Wells and Angela Young -- challenges ideas of self image and traditional definitions of art and media.

Funkhouser says "Schrödinger's Menagerie" is a reference to Erwin Schrodinger's cat experiment, which suggested that two ideas can be contradictory but exist at the same time.

It'll be darker and sexier than what you'd expect from a typical Funkhouser show, he says.

"We've got some very recent graduates, MFA candidates, people who recently moved back to the Valley and more established artists," Funkhouser says. "I've found it always pays to help out younger artists as much as possible. I think it's important not to get caught up in your 'art world status.'" 

In his own work, which will also be featured in the show, Funkhouser depicts his own alter egos, which include lucha libre characters and more feminine aspects with wigs and dresses. He says he's found that these "alters" also make a reputation for themselves:

"At [recent show Tangle and Mulch] one the participating artists came up and said he liked my work, and then I put on my luchador mask, got naked and started posing and the same guy came back and goes, 'You were are South by Southwest, weren't you?' ... Being naked with a mask on, I'm more recognizable than in my every day life," he says, laughing. "I wouldn't have it any other way."

The Artlink A. E. England Gallery is located at 424 N. Central Ave. in Phoenix.

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Jessica VanZalen