An interview with Liz Brizzi

Liz Brizzi at work in her downtown LA studio

A native of France, born of Italian parents, Liz Brizzi grew up in Los Angeles. Inspired by urban themes, she loves to portray the beauty she captures in the raw, desolate and industrial aspects of cities and their outskirts. Her unique mixed media technique begins with the manipulation of her original photography collaged onto acrylic painted wood panels, finally blended within layers of colorful acrylic washes. She began this series of works with landscape paintings of the streets and alleys of Downtown L.A. A city that is currently changing and developing rapidly, her artwork captured its authenticity and some of the disappearing traces of its History. Her more current work is less lifelike, as she utilizes various architectural details found in her photos to create more complex graphics, structures and imaginary landscapes, while using shapes reminiscent of street art found in the very same cities she photographs.

Liz graduated in 2002 from Otis Art Institute with a BFA in Illustration and now works as a graphic artist from her studio in Downtown Los Angeles.

Liz Brizzi 'Closing Act' - collaged photography and acrylic on wood panel

An interview with Liz Brizzi

Can you share a lil’ bit about your new body of work that will be on view this February?
I sure can! These new pieces have a lot of my usual cityscape elements and moods… but I did several paintings which I call the “night time series”. It’s something I had only done once before at a previous show; the setting for those is… you guessed it… night time. I just love the contrast and play in colors that it allowed me to play with. I am very fond of driving through downtown at night and love the atmosphere that is created by the dim security lights on the warehouses and buildings. So I tried to bring that into these new pieces. There is also another piece that brings newness to the show. It’s a piece I did on reclaimed wood from old palettes. I’m excited to introduce this concept into my body of work and really look forward to doing more.

Liz Brizzi 'Convergence' - collaged photography and acrylic on wood panel

What draws you to the desolate and derelict areas of our city?
I’ve tried to figure that out myself. At first it was inexplicable even to myself. Why am I so attracted to these old dirty alleys and buildings that are falling apart? The only explanation I can think of is this one… To me, there’s something really beautiful about things that are not “perfect”. I live in Los Angeles, where the city’s whole culture revolves around perfection. People want perfect faces, perfect bodies, perfect new houses, with perfect lawns and perfect weather. I’m not complaining. I love living here. I have perfect fun here. 🙂 But sometimes, it ends up looking very fake, and bland, and boring. And mostly… very new. I think, and maybe it’s because I’m European, I love it when I find something here that is old, and shows marks from the past… something that is somewhat imperfect. Stained, lived in, sometimes falling apart. That is why I started taking photographs of Downtown Los Angeles, which I completely rediscovered when I moved there. I love it. I feel like it’s the only place in LA that is old and historical. Just like its bridges over the LA river. I love them so much. I live right next to one. So, that fascination of mine evolved and I started exploring the outskirts of LA, where I found almost surreal places (see my “Hobart Station” or “Outskrts” paintings). I love those places. They’re like… my little secret. They’re so detached from the “Hollywood” world. They’re hiding. But they’re real, and I sometimes feel they are the City’s heart beat.

What fuels you to keep creating?
I think it’s just the most rewarding work you can do. I love “making stuff”. You start with a concept in your head, an image… a sudden idea you may get from seeing or hearing something that inspires you. Then you take that and bring it to life, building it from A to Z. Then you have something to show for your hard work. You made that. And when other people enjoy it too… well it’s just really rewarding. I also couldn’t see myself doing anything else. I will never go back to an office desk job. So I gotta keep up with creativity if I wanna to stay on its path.

Liz Brizzi 'Trespass' - collaged photography and acrylic on wood panel

Please describe your dream project if time and money were not issues.
I’d love to go around the world for a couple of years and paint scenes from all the big cities I would get to see. Get a studio space in each city, go out and shoot photographs for days, then create a few pieces inspired by them. Then on to the next city… Mostly, I want to do a Tokyo series so bad! That would be really amazing…

Favorite item in your studio?
My computer, my awesome new printer, and my inspiration board.

Liz Brizzi at work

Is there anyone in particular, artist or otherwise, that you’d like to give a shout out to here?
Oh yeah! I definitely wanna dedicate these few lines to your partner in crime L. Croskey. Aside from being an amazing artist and curator, LC has been a mentor to me (and many other artists!). I came to him with my first few pieces about 3 years ago, and he gave me the advice and constructive criticism that I needed to hear. He gave me my first show with Cannibal Flower, and then helped me grow as an artist as I went back to him for more words of wisdom. I owe him a lot and have a lot of respect for him as a mentor and fellow artist. So yeah… Thank you LC.

Any shows or special projects coming up after your exhibit with us here at Thinkspace you would like to mention?
I’m excited to have a feature in Blue Canvas Magazine #12 coming up in April I think. Then I should have a show at Curbside Gallery in Santa Ana this summer. And I’ve been in touch with a couple of galleries in Paris that are interested in showing my work, so hopefully I’ll be showing there around the end of the year.

Liz Brizzi 'Beyond The Tracks' - collaged photography and acrylic on wood panel

Take a sneak peek at Liz Brizzi’s new works here:
www.flickr.com/photos/thinkspace/sets/72157628506554335/

New works from Liz Brizzi

Reception with the artist: THIS Sat, Feb. 4th 5-8PM in our project room

On view Feb. 4th – Feb. 25th in our project room

Thinkspace / 6009 Washington Blvd. in Culver City, CA / www.thinkspacegallery.com

Ana Bagayan ‘There Is Time To Kill Today’ opens next Sat, Feb. 4th at Thinkspace

Ana Bagayan
‘There Is Time To Kill Today’

Reception with the artist: Sat, Feb. 4th 5-8PM

Take a ‘sneak peek’ at Ana’s new works here:
www.flickr.com/photos/thinkspace/sets/72157628307493099/

The digital preview for Ana’s 1st LA solo show in almost 3 years will be ready early next week. Please be sure to send a mail to contact@thinkspacegallery.com if you want to be ensure you are on the preview list for this show. Please also note we will be holding back a selection of miniature drawings from Ana that will be available first come, first served once we open the doors on Sat, Feb. 4th at 5PM.

Early next week we will be announcing plans for two new prints from Ana that will be released during the opening on Sat, Feb. 4th. The prints will first be released at the opening for in-person sales and then available via our site the week following for out-of-state sales. Add’l details to follow soon.

Thinkspace / 6009 Washington Blvd. in Culver City, CA / www.thinkspacegallery.com

Recommended openings for Sat, Jan. 28th

Mari Inukai's piece for "Year of the Dragon" at GR2

Sat, Jan. 28th 8PM-1AM
 – $10 or $8 with donation to L.A. Food Bank (OR $6 in costume)
Cannibal Flower
800 McGarry St. in Los Angeles, 90021
Bi-Monthly Pop-Up Event with Featured Artist Sean Joyce and a Huge Group Art Show featuring Young Chun, Mimi Yoon, Angelina Christina, Lauren Haggis, Elliot Brown, Kristin Bockrath, Gustavo Rimada, Michael Christy, Michael Pukac, JoKa, N.S. David, Phil Santos, Erik Siador, Allison Torneros, Rask One, Nate Seubert, L. Croskey, Nate Geare, Khalid Hussein, Meirav Haber, Catherine Kaleel, Christopher Willingham, Andrea Iakovidis, Nicole Bruckman, Ubaldo Miranda Villa, Susan Spano, Donna Letterese, Wellington Rawls, Terri Berman, Kasim Patton, Brian Whitmire, Jaime Becker, Nick Whitmire, Amy Bernays, John Wales, Genie Melisande, Sarah Ramirez, Greg Yoshitake, Bob Kent, Jim Lembeck, Keith Vogt, Roland Salandy, Lani Salhus, Melany Meza-Dierks, Kitty Brown, Tim Boggs. Shawn Waco, Eric Staniford, Brad Cagle, Andre Ajibade, Charles Perera, Nyoka, Ilona Sampovaara, Meghan Quinn, Colleen Sandland, Angela Morticia Rue, Jason Lockyer, Chrystal Walker, Lisa Hirata, Christina Czybik, Rhiannon Marhi and more plus Live Music from RageArea and Beats Curated by Mr. NumberOnederful,
DJ Patrick Icon,
DJ DTE along with Live Painters
Nora Hall and Rick Rodriguez and Live Painters painting on live models
Leftyjoe, Ruben Gonzales
and Thomas Ambrose Denney
(One-night only special event)
www.cannibalflower.com

Sat, Jan. 28th 6:30-10PM
GR2
2062 Sawtelle Blvd in Los Angeles
‘Year of the Dragon’ – come check out the new GR2 layout and say goodbye to long time Giant Robot mainstay Michelle Borok and celebrate the Year of the Dragon with works from Robert Bellm, Elliot Brown, Sean Chao, Luke Chueh, Joe Hahn, Kio Griffith, Nao Harada, David Horvath, Tessar Lo, Martin Hsu, Mari Inukai, Miso, Angry Woebots, Martin Ontiveros, Sidney Pink, Edwin Ushiro, Yoskay Yamamoto, Jeni Yang, and many more
(On view through Feb. 15th)
www.gr2.net

Sat, Jan. 28th 6-9PM
New Image Art Gallery
7920 Santa Monica Blvd. in West Hollywood
‘Look Into It – If You Know How’ featuring new works by Rich Jacobs + a mini-movie show curated by Jacobs featuring Tobin Yelland, Jordin Isip, Billy Sprague, Timm Kerr, and others + the “Move” group show, curated by Rich Jacobs. Featuring one piece each by artists: Sandy Yang, Aya Muto, Jeff Canham, Amanda Marsalis, James Gallagher, Billy Sprague, Orion Shepherd , Kelly Nicholson, Jordin Isip, Simone Shubuck, Erika Barboa, Clint Woodside, Tim Kerr, and possibly more
(On view through Feb. 18th)
www.newimageartgallery.com

Plus this weekend is the 7th Annual ‘Museums Free-For-All’
Sat, Jan. 28th & Sun, Jan. 29th

Participating Museums:
The Annenberg Space for Photography – Both Days
The Autry National Center – Both Days
California African American Museum – Both Days
California Science Center – Both Days
Chinese American Museum of Los Angeles – Both Days
Fowler Museum at UCLA – Both Days
The Hammer Museum – Both Days
The Getty Center – Both Days
The Getty Villa**- Both Days
Laguna Art Museum- Both Days
Los Angeles Fire Department Museum and Memorial (Both Hollywood & San Pedro Locations)- Saturday, January 28th Only
The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (MOCA) – Saturday, January 28th Only
Museum of Tolerance – Sunday, January 29th Only
Museum of Latin American Art – Both Days
Pasadena Museum of California Art – Both Days
Santa Monica Museum of Art – Saturday, January 28th Only
Skirball Cultural Center*** – Saturday, January 28th Only
Zimmer Children’s Museum – Sunday, January 29th Only

*Regular parking fees apply. General museum admission only. May not apply to ticketed exhibitions.
**Timed tickets are required. Visit http://www.getty.edu
***Timed entry to the Noah’s Ark exhibition will be on a walk-up, first-come, first-serve basis on this date

Ana Bagayan + Liz Brizzi – coming up Feb. 4th at Thinkspace

Ana Bagayan
‘There Is Time To Kill Today’

Reception with the artists: Sat, Feb. 4th 5-8PM

‘There Is Time To Kill Today’ will showcase new paintings, drawings and the debut of a new series of charcoal works on canvas from artist Ana Bagayan.

Ana Bagayan was born in the Armenian capital of Yerevan. She studied painting at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California. Her work explores images of adolescence as metaphors for larger themes of ethos and wonder and has been featured in such publications as Rollingstone, Spin, GQ and various others. She currently lives and works in Burbank, California.

Ana talks a lil’ about the show... “Although theres no unifying theme to this show, the inspiration for the work comes from the metaphysical- ghosts, spirits, intergalactic space creatures, anything that hints at the idea that we are just a small part of the unimaginably vast universe. Some of the works are based on hypnosis sessions of people who believed they had been abducted by aliens. I’ve created human/alien hybrid creatures based on the experiences these people described. All of the works, I feel, incorporate the inherent beauty of interpreting both the known and unknown.”

Take a ‘sneak peek’ at Ana’s new works here:
www.flickr.com/photos/thinkspace/sets/72157628307493099/

PLUS in our project room:

New works from Liz Brizzi

A native of France, born of Italian parents, Liz Brizzi grew up in Los Angeles. Inspired by urban themes, she loves to portray the beauty she captures in the raw, desolate and industrial aspects of cities and their outskirts. Her unique mixed media technique begins with the manipulation of her original photography collaged onto acrylic painted wood panels, finally blended within layers of colorful acrylic washes. She began this series of works with landscape paintings of the streets and alleys of Downtown L.A. A city that is currently changing and developing rapidly, her artwork captured its authenticity and some of the disappearing traces of its History. Her more current work is less lifelike, as she utilizes various architectural details found in her photos to create more complex graphics, structures and imaginary landscapes, while using shapes reminiscent of street art found in the very same cities she photographs.

Liz graduated in 2002 from Otis Art Institute with a BFA in Illustration and now works as a graphic artist from her studio in Downtown Los Angeles.

Take a ‘sneak peek’ at Liz’s new works here:
www.flickr.com/photos/thinkspace/sets/72157628506554335/

Both exhibits on view: Feb. 4th – Feb. 25th, 2012

Thinkspace / 6009 Washington Blvd. / Culver City, CA / www.thinkspacegallery.com

Morgan Spurlock in discussion with Andrew Hosner from Thinkspace at the Affordable Art Fair LA

On Fri, Jan. 20th writer, director and producer Morgan Spurlock (Supersize Me, 30 Days, The Greatest Movie Ever Sold) sat down with Thinkspace Gallery director Andrew Hosner for a discussion during the Affordable Art Fair LA regarding his love for contemporary art and the upcoming exhibit he will be curating at Thinkspace this coming April.