This week I had a conversation with my fellow classmate Alissa S. Alissa is a second year business major here at CSULB. She is originally from Downey, California which is not that far from where we are. She is a self-proclaimed movie nerd and her favorite genre is horror. Her favorite director of all time is Eli Roth. When I asked her what her favorite piece was she said that the second piece was the one she appreciated the most. Her reason was that the artwork referenced, “Mama, said knock you out.” Also, she thought that the color scheme was really cool in her opinion. She shared that her definition of art is any medium of expression that makes you happy and makes it possible for you to express yourself. One interesting coincidence that we both found out was that we are in the same class after this one which is Accounting 201 with Professor Campbell. I can tell that Alissa and I are going to be good friends throughout the year.
The artist that I chose to have a conversation this week goes by the name of Josh Benz. Josh and his partner Karen Solis collaborated together to produce the artwork shown above. The painting was displayed in the Max L Gatov East Gallery. Josh explained from the brainstorming step of the project. They both thought of issues that mattered today and wanted to combine a variety of colors for this work. Something beautiful is what they aimed for and wanted to stir up feelings of the past, present, and future. Josh added that the time of day that they worked was night time. Josh and Karen preferred working at night because that is when they are energetic and there is no one around to disturb them. Also, they had music on to fill in the quiet. He and Karen apparently clashed a lot during the process and even painted over each other’s work. However, despite their differences, Josh and Karen were able to create a wonderful painting that incorporated realistic figures in abstract art. The painting showed the transition from childhood to adulthood. Josh was responsible for the abstract coloring and figures and Karen was responsible for the realistic components of the piece. I really enjoyed the painting that Josh and Karen created together and thought that their idea was new and creative.
Born and raised in an era fueled by technology, even going one night without electricity was a struggle. When I found out what the assignment was about, I knew that I was going to have hard time. The night that I went technology-free was the night I was born again.. Not really but that night was not my average night. I never knew how big of a role technology had in my life. There is so much influence that social media has on our generation. First off, I could not see a single shed of light without the light bulb. I had to focus really hard to make sure that I did not run into things while I was active. I was tempted countless of times to touch my phone and eventually had to toss it somewhere into the darkness. I was extremely bored and felt isolated from the outside world without my mobile device. However, not having a bright screen in your face for long hours helped my body to be more relaxed and soon enough I was drowsy enough to sleep. What seemed to be only seconds of closing my eyes turned out to be hours of deep sleep. This assignment helped me to get the best rest that I had in my college years.
The new friend I had a conversation with this week goes by the name of Chris Chang. Chris is a 4th year here at CSULB and is studying Applied Mathematics. Coincidentally, he is also a Korean-American like I am. This guy enjoys being active and plays sports such as basketball, volleyball, and surfing. He was born in Northridge but moved back to Korea after the 1994 earthquake. Then couples years after his time in Korea, Chris moved to Orange County with his family. Chris and I share a common interest in the music genre EDM and we both attended the Hard Summer Music Festival this past summer. Currently, Chris is working for a financial consulting firm called Smithwick and Matthews. Chris was very open about his life and gave me an answer to every question I had about him. I wish the very best to this guy and hope to cross paths with him sometime in the near future.
The name of the artist I had a conversation with was Tida Whitney. She is 22 years old and is a 4th year at CSULB who will be graduating next spring. The name of her project is, “Disposable Thought.” She and her partner, Daniel Rivera came up with the idea of the project last spring school year to visually show people’s thoughts. This art is made entirely out of napkins. To be exact, this project consisted of over a thousand pieces of napkins. The two drew all the art on the napkins and sewed them all up. The entire quilt could cover up the floor of the Marilyn Werby Gallery. She told us that the hardest part of this work was to actually fit the project in the gallery room. Daniel was the one who came up with raising the quilt off the floor and towards the ceiling. His idea was to create a tunnel of thoughts so observers can walk under and through the blanket of napkins. The installation of this piece took a total of 35 hours and that is not including the other 30-35 hours it took to sew all the individual napkins together. Besides all the tedious work and obstacles, Tida told us how grateful and happy she is that she got the opportunity to show off her work like this. You can find more of her works through her Instagram @Tidawhitney 🙂
My initial thought about this project was that it was going to pretty simple and easy. I never liked coloring and sucked badly at it because I did not like taking the time to fill the entire drawing with color. I assumed that since the can just sprays the paint by the press of a button that creating my name in bubble letters would be a piece of cake. However, I failed to include the possibility that using too much or too little spray paint can affect the outcome of the painting. As you can see in the pictures above, I used too much spray paint to color the eyes of the man I spray painted. I also had to constantly repaint the colors of my name because some of the purple would splatter onto the yellow and vice versa. Overall, working with spray paint was fun except the part of inhaling the toxic fumes in and I will definitely try it out again in my free time.
The name of the artist I interviewed was Nick Bamford. His untitled artwork was shown in the Max L. Gatov Gallery East. His art pieces were in the form of sculptures made from cement, stabilized clay, and plaster. When I asked him the meaning and correlation of the artwork he simply stated that there was no defined meaning and that it was all up to the interpretation of the individual. The only two pieces that had something to do with each other were the sculpture of the guitarist and the dancing lady. He added that the guitarist came from one of his favorite painting, “The Old Guitarist.” His inspiration came from the top of his head. He challenged himself to create something new with material he has never used before. The sculptures look barely finished but enough to know what they look like and is going on. The plaster/cement look like as if though it is melting off the sculpture. When I saw his sculptures, I only called it as I saw it. Just like what you see in the picture above, all I see is a man playing a guitar while a woman is dancing to the music.
I have never been to an art exhibition. The thought of having a conversation with an artist about his or her work has never crossed my mind. This experience is something that I will never forget and I look forward to see what else this class has to offer.
The name of the classmate I had a conversation with was Natalia Chang. She is a second year student studying fashion merchandising here at CSULB. Her interests include fashion, music, drawing, and basically anything that involves being creative. Her ethnicity is Korean just like I am. However, she sees herself as a Latina because she was born and raised in Brazil for most of her childhood. Fortunately for me, she loves meeting people and that trait truly shined as I was talking to her.
As we passed the formal introductions and basic questions, I asked Natalia about her experience at the gallery exhibit that the class went to on Thursday. She told me she was mesmerized by the piece called, “The One Who Sees.” She gave me a brief summary about how the art was supposed to emphasize the idea of existing and not existing at any time. The art is supposed to make you feel invisible since you are outside of the circle, but at the same time, the members of this ritual can see you wherever you are outside. It is very complicated and I definitely need a more detailed explanation from the artist.
I am glad that I chose Natalia to have a conversation with. I learned a lot about my fellow classmate and hopefully our relationship will not end with this assignment. 🙂
When I searched up the hashtag #art110f15, I was exposed to a wide variety of pictures. There were pictures of tacos, dogs, League of Legends, selfies, etc. Desperately looking for any sort of connections between the photos, I lost hope as I scrolled endlessly down the enormous archive. However, as I was planning to treat myself to some Netflix after writing this blog, I finally found a link. The word is “Narcos” and this is the new Netflix original show that has hooked viewers with its pilot episode. This one connection snapped me out of the pessimistic thinking that everyone these days are different. Everyone in my generation is connected to each other somehow. Whether its through sports, music, technology, or even a show on Netflix, our generation can always find a way to relate to one each other.