July 2 - July 26, 2010
Reception for the artists, Friday July 2, 2010, 8pm - 11pm
La Luz de Jesus - Gallery II
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Michael Brown Invisible Friends
Michael Brown's artwork is a tapestry of many mediums including acrylic, polymer clay, enamel and more, inspired by 1930's and 40's cartoons, hot rod art, and 70's pop culture. Throughout his diverse body of work there is a continuous theme of dark humor and addiction. Invisible Friends is a collection of small, but detailed pockets of dark humor that pull from historical events, medical rituals, magic, secret societies and the dark underbelly of what is considered taboo.
Born to a world-famous puppeteer family in New York City, Michael's first influences were based on the old world imagery that which surrounded him. He earned a BFA from Corcoran School of Art in Washington DC. Michael currently resides in the mountains of Virginia with his wife Liz where he produces a prolific body of work that explores the strange and the wonderful.
Frijol Boy Pieces of Me
Working with acrylic, Plexiglas and wood, Frijol Boy's Pieces of Me shows many aspects of life portrayed by a character in a bunny suit. "I was always the kid in class who was drawing. All the girls would ask, 'Can you draw me something cute? I used to want to be a cartoonist, and that's why I went to school for animation. As I grew up, more people kept asking me to draw cute stuff and I got kind of annoyed but I became good at it. As I got older, my art came to represent one of the strongest things I believe in and that's the idea that you can't judge a book by its cover. Sometimes it will be a bright, colorful, cartoony image that attracts you, then you look at it and see the real message, the deeper meaning," explains Juan "Frijol Boy" Muniz in an interview with Allyson Duck of the Las Vegas Sun.
The Tijuana born artist grew up in San Diego and learned English by watching Saturday morning cartoons. Frijol Boy moved to Las Vegas then attended Collins College in Arizona to learn more about animation. After receiving an associates degree Frijol Boy moved back to Las Vegas where he became a tattoo artist and started his involvement with the First Friday art openings which provided a place for him to show his "weird little character paintings."
"I'm always trying new mediums and always trying to collaborate with other artists. The world is full of beauty and horrid things. I'm just trying to show that through my morbid cute art," states the artist.
Lauren Gardiner Mentally Unfit Saints
Lauren Gardiner's tiny paintings are intricate and intimate portraits portraying each subject's every lash, wart and twangy hair. These characters, whether human, animal or insect, are observations of how people present themselves for prosperity as well as how they react in front of the camera. Her use of ambiguous backgrounds, uncomfortable glares and awkward postures, typical of professional portrait photography are humorous yet cynical little vignettes that give a brief glimpse into the human condition.
Lauren was born in the U.S., but grew up in Singapore, Australia and England. After graduating in Illustration in 1998 from the Rhode Island School of Design, she moved to Los Angeles where she observes the many aggravating facets of human life that help provide the inspiration for her little portraits paintings. www.laurenfromla.com
Cristina Paulos Intrinsic Duality
Cristina Paulos incorporates various techniques from animation and traditional fine arts, applying them to her work creating impressions of movement, working in mixed medias including sum inks, fabric dyes, coffee stains, charcoal, pencils and acrylic and oil paints utilizing the various textures handmade paper, canvas, cardboard and wood. She works from life and recycling of her reoccurring "Twin" characters. "The Twins were created via the process of animation, and twin imagery has become a personal signature in my work. I use cartoons and my characters to capture, intrigue, and engage my audience. My artwork creates its own unique narratives, sometimes they may not reveal themselves fully upon first viewing." states the artist.
Intrinsic Duality is a collection of pieces exploring themes of dual matched twin imagery based on manifestations of characters from my early animation experiments. I have brought my work full circle, using playfulness of bright color and abstractions of repetitive shapes alongside unique narratives of my familiar twin characters.
Cristina Natsuko Paulos is an American born Artist of Japanese and Portuguese ancestry, growing up in the San Fernando Valley of southern California. She received her BFA from the California Institute of the Arts in Animation. She spends her time making comics, painting, illustrations, creating puppet shows, and creating short cartoon films from her studio in Las Vegas, NV.
Cristina's animated films have screened in film festivals from New York to Las Vegas, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. She has collaborated with numerous puppeteers in toy theatre puppetry performances with recognition by the Nevada Art Council, where she received an Artist Fellowship Grant. She worked with companies such as Nickelodeon, Anthropologie, Sesame Street workshop, and Next New Networks.www.cristinapaulos.com
Alyson Souza Integral Inpediments
In Integral Inpediments, Alyson Souza works with oil, wood and mixed media, exploring the perspective of the individual as a part of something larger. It asks whether we are working with what and who surrounds us or despite of these 'impediments'. Some of the work looks at this issue on an internal level. Different aspects of ourselves take over at different times. Our own actions are often diametrically opposed to achieving what we claim to desire. As with all her work Souza is as acutely aware of the physical nature of each piece, as the conceptual. Texture, brush stroke and the feel of the wooden objects are of utmost importance.
At seventeen, the Western Massachusetts born and raised Souza received a full scholarship to the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in New York City. Her work subsequently appeared in several group shows in lower Manhattan. In 1993 she began to work in wood, constructing intricate three-dimensional oil paintings. After settling in Los Angeles, Souza had her first solo exhibition entitled Mind Matters in 2000, at the Robert Berman Gallery in Santa Monica. In 2003 Souza received a grant from The Ucross Foundation in Wyoming where she completed a six-week residency. Her work appeared on X-Files and in 2005 an "Artist's Profile" of Souza and her work was shown on HGTV. Since then her art has been shown in galleries nationwide including the recent Oddly Content at the Nau-haus Gallery in Houston. www.paintwood.com
Fiddle Tim is a pseudonym.
Inspired by: Al Columbia, Frank Kozik, Satan.
Turn ons: snuggies, butter.
Turn offs: scurvy.
Bio: we should play croquet sometime.
The artist will be in attendance. There will be BBQ, beer and tequila.