John Carlos De Luna
Born and Raised in Boyle Heights California, John Carlos De Luna, absorbed the vivid influences of L.A.’s best muralists and graffiti artists. De Luna grew up in Los Angeles and was very active in the East Los Angeles Graffiti Art scene since the mid 1990’s, as a skillful and well respected street artist. De Luna spent the majority of his youth in the infamous Estrada Courts Housing Projects, known for their historic murals. There he had the opportunity to admire, study and recreate these powerful works in his sketch books as a young child and teen, drawing from the inspiration of the legendary Chicano artists and muralists of the 1970′s. This inevitably inspired him to create his own murals and works of art from a very young age. Throughout this period, young De Luna’s artwork progressed into an innovative style in which he cultivated a three dimensional design technique for illustrations, portraits, and typographical works. Many elements of historical design have influenced De Luna from DADA, Russian Constructivism, historical Los Angeles architecture such as Art Deco, Art Nouveau and many of the unique mexican and latin American elements that make up Los Angeles. Most importantly the Chicano school of art particularly “ASCO” stands as a defining factor in his art and continues to influence and penetrate his current work.
De Luna’s current artworks and writings are shifting into a strong and definitive body of work. As De Luna has matured his work has become a powerful and enigmatic language, cultivating dialogues and creating social awareness around issues that affect all Americans and immigrants. De Luna still lives and works in his home studio in Boyle Heights and is currently developing several new bodies of work for his first expansive solo show in 2012.
My artistic practice is founded on the importance of building bridges between my multi layered historical identity and the present. I value experimentation and my work travels among illustrative, abstract, cubist and surrealistic styles through the use of mixed media, two-dimensional painting, assemblage, and drawing. My work contains a colorful, architectural quality and deeply examines structure, symmetry, and the relationship between forms. I consider my artistic process to be as significant as its end result and believe that the relationship between process and product houses important opportunities to elevate social consciousness and most important my own healing and development. Without compromising on aesthetic or theoretical complexity, my narrative artworks maintain their accessibility and engage with peoples and their identities and social cultural experiences. The content of my work surveys the intersections of my own experiences as they also relate to the experiences of many and work together in order to create the connective tissue between historically significant social cultural experiences and contemporary human dilemmas. Through my visual narratives, I utilize pop cultural iconography and both primary and secondary photographic sources. I choose content based on how it embodies a social conflict, points of solidarity, or evidence of sociocultural adaptations and my own. Each piece poses too a question of personal reflection and an opportunity for change and healing.