Thank you to everyone who came out to celebrate the opening of Thinkspace Project’s new shows this past Saturday. Not only was the art incredible, art lovers showed up in amazing costumes to celebrate LA’s biggest Halloween art party!
Check out Brian M. Viveros‘s largest show yet, with 35 new works for ‘MANIA‘ in Gallery I. He delivered his signature detailed work, creating femme fatales as the heroes of their own stories.
In Gallery II, Motelseven‘s ‘Waiting for Atlantis‘ is playing with the juxtaposition of the colorful and playful among tragedy and existential turmoil. The subjects are callbacks to the women they’ve painted in the past, but this time they are ready to be defiant and break free.
Abigail Goldman brings the macabre on a tiny scale for ‘Instincts and Indulgences‘ in Gallery III. Enjoy the artist’s die-o-ramas of seemingly boring scenes with bits of gore and humor weaved throughout.
Don’t miss Huntz Liu‘s signature layering technique in their new collection ‘Dissolution.’ The way the artist plays with geometry and negative space to create is out of this world art.
Much love to Allison Bamcat, GoopMassta, Balloonski, The Roll n Bun, Timeless Vapes, Venice Beats, and everyone that came together to create one hell of a vibe in our courtyard!
Thinkspace Projects is thrilled to present Brian Viveros’s ‘MANIA‘. The CA-based artist best known for his highly detailed paintings of anti-pin-up doe-eyed ‘Woman of Power’ and his Dirtyland universe brings an entirely new body of work to the gallery.
MANIA is a tribute show, it’s a personal show, and it’s a bit of a journey taking viewers back in time to the things Viveros obsessed over as a kid, the things that ultimately drove the MANIA inside of him.
Our interview with Brian M. Viveros reveals stories behind the work, covers reflections on his artistic career, and provides a recommendation for the perfect spot to kick off a taco tour in San Diego.
MANIA pays tribute to the cultural influences that you obsessed over and inspired you in your youth, pulling references from various objects within your life – can you share any memories or anecdotes that directly tie to one of the pieces?
Shhhure. One story that comes to mind is with the Conan the Barbarian tribute piece I did for this show entitled ‘Barbarian.’ It’s kind of a messed up story, but funny – here it goes. I was 8 years old, and Conan comics were a big part of my life and my dad was a collector of Conan and everything Frazetta. I remember being in class & being called to the office, which at that time was a scary thing (push play on scary music theme now HA!) but back then, when you got called to the principal’s office, it was not good. They had told me a family member had passed away and that my father was outside waiting for me in the car. When I got to the car, I was kind of sad and confused and asked my Dad, who passed away, and he said, ‘nobody,’ we’re going to see Conan the Barbarian it opened today, and I was like…. hell Yeahh!!!
This show was an exercise in pushing yourself out of your comfort zone; what did that look like for you when developing this body of work? What new techniques did you develop? Were there any valuable failure moments?
Good question my friend; it actually had a lot to do with the size of the new location of your gallery. I felt this need and urge to go big and try new things. Sometimes space will do that to you. For me, I tend to plot things out in my mind and hold onto ideas for shows and hopefully, they’ll come to fruition. I’ve had this idea for a while about doing a MANIA show that would be a bit of a tribute show, and throwback to things that really moved me or I obsessed on as a kid. I even went back to using and incorporating some older mediums like spray paint for backgrounds and doing a set of pieces in gouache and watercolors. A lot of your readers may not know this but straight out of high school I opened the first graffiti hip-hop shop in the IE (Inland Empire) I was into spray painting and selling all the gear at that time in 93’. Anyhow, I brought back the can and cutting stencils for patterns, and things I use to do is now full circle with this set. As an artist, you grow and make mistakes in creating, its a good fuck up, and try something different & see what happens. Sometimes its a happy accident and sometimes it’s not, but you learn from it and move on
People feel extremely connected to your work, getting tattoos and dressing up as the women you paint for opening exhibitions. Has there been a fan experience or collector encounter that has really stuck with you?
I think it was the last show we did, ‘Tougher Than Leather’ a friend of mine, Christina Preiss, showed up in a full-on detailed head-to-toe Dia de Los Muertos Day of the Dead costume, and it just looked so RAD in the gallery. It created this awesome energy that night in the room. Something I’ll never forget and the people loved it
MANIA is your 7th solo exhibition with Thinkspace. Does this exhibition feel different, or do you have a similar emotional experience ahead of any show?
Feels a little different for me this time around just because the work is on a different level now. Thus far, with my DirtyLand ‘Woman of Power’ pieces, all the ones I’ve done throughout the years, it’s been about letting the viewer tell the story about these characters I’ve created. With MANIA, I’ve taken the narrator role, steering the Dirty-ship and taking you, the viewer, on a very personal journey.
When first developing your artistic voice, you wanted to ensure you had a distinct style that made it so if anyone saw one of your pieces; they immediately would know it was a Viveros – over your career, have you found the choices you made in the initial development to have been limiting or liberating?
In the initial development, I was focused on just the smoking thing, and the red rose thing and giving my girls a certain signature look with the eyes and teardrop tattoo and this anti-pinup Dirty world I was creating where all the girls would be tough warriors, survivors sporting helmets & headgear. I feel liberated in the sense that it’s no longer just about that. You still know it’s a Viveros without those specific elements. I’ve been doing it so long, and early on it was all about just the smoking with helmets, but it’s progressed – I’ve progressed. The DirtyLand no longer needs cigarettes and red roses for you to know it’s a Viveros. It’s like my audience has grown with me and I’m always thankful for them and their support and growing with my art.
If you could have any skill or topic downloaded into your brain, what would you want to be able to do/ be an expert at?
That’s an easy one for me – filmmaking, and that’s where I’m headed
If you could collaborate with any artists in any medium (i.e. movies, music, fashion), who would you collaborate with, and what would you be making?
I’d love to collaborate with Guillermo Del Toro or Alejandro Jodorowsky on a film. We would be making a surreal revenge film with a twist of sci-fi and horror. The main character would be a kick-ass chick, of course>;-)
Who are some women from cinema, pop culture, or literature who you think embody the qualities of the women in your work?
Some kick-ass women that come to mind that embody the qualities of my women would be Ripley from Alien, Sarah Connor from Terminator and Furiosa from Mad Max Fury Road, Spanish Flamenco Dancer Carmen Amaya, Karen O from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Blondie
What are qualities of significant women in your life that you admire and wish came more naturally to you?
Being a little more grounded for sure. I tend to be off in DirtyLandia land all the time. My mind is always racing and thinking, and now in my forties, I’m trying not to overthink shit so much and care so much. I think that happens in your forties HA!
You’re a big fan of tacos. If you could take 5 people, dead or alive, on a taco tour, who would be on the guest list, where would you go, and what would be ordered?
TACOMANIA!!!!! The five people I would take out for tacos in a taco van with a painted taco mural would be H.R. GIGER, The Beastie Boys – does that count as three ha!, Mike Dirnt he loves tacos like I love tacos, Picasso, and Bjork maybe that’s more than five we would drive to SALUD! in San Diego & few other hole in the wall spots in SD and sample all the tacos they offer. Always gotta try every places’ carnitas taco because they’re all so different. Then we’d all get drunk and have a break dancing contest on the street with LC DJing in the van Ha!
Opening on Saturday, October 29, from 6 – 11 pm with DJ’s Venice Beats, open bar + free drinks from Liquid Death, video projections from Digital Debris, installations from Balloonski, a vape bar from our friends at Timeless, live painting from Allison Bamcat, photo op props from GoopMassta, Day of the Dead stilt walkers, grub from The Roll N’ Bun + a Halloween costume contest with $500 top cash prize + loads of runner up prizes!!!
FREE poster commemorating ‘MANIA‘ given away to the first 200 patrons through the doors!
Exhibitions on view October 29 – November 19, 2022
Opening on Saturday, October 29 from 6-11pm with DJ’s Venice Beats, open bar + free drinks from Liquid Death, video projections from Digital Debris, installations from Balloonski, a vape bar from our friends at Timeless, live painting from Allison Bamcat, photo op props from GoopMassta, Day of the Dead stilt walkers, grub from The Roll N’ Bun + a Halloween costume contest with $500 top cash prize + loads of runner up prizes!!!
FREE poster commemorating ‘MANIA’ given away to the first 200 patrons through the doors!
Exhibitions on view October 29 – November 19, 2022
Just in time for a Halloween celebration, Thinkspace Projects is thrilled to present Brian Viveros’s MANIA. The CA-based artist best known for his highly detailed paintings of anti-pin-up doe-eyed ‘Woman of Power’ and his Dirtyland universe, brings an entirely new body of work to the gallery.
For his 7th show with the gallery, Viveros brings his biggest collection yet, with over 25 new pieces. Featuring the beautiful and yet barbarous subjects he is known for, each piece draws from the power of the feminine and its reconciliation of vulnerability, beauty, and power. His subjects are fighters and survivors, they are the heroes standing tall, rendered immaculately, and just bloodied enough to remind us that they are formidable opponents not to be taken lightly. Viveros’ work elevates the iconography of the femme-fatale as a powerful emblem of strength and retaliation: insubordinate beauties undaunted by the unruliness of a messy fight.
MANIA is a tribute show, it’s a personal show, and it’s a bit of a journey taking viewers back in time to the things Viveros obsessed over as a kid, the things that ultimately drove the MANIA inside of him. This body of work is a challenge and a true progression for the artist pushing him outside his comfort zone into breathtaking new territory, not only in theme in scale, size, color palette, techniques and even mediums like watercolors, gouache, and spray paint.
Thus far, his work has been about letting the viewer tell the story. With MANIA he reclaims the narrator role, taking viewers on a very personal journey.
“MANIA is the Battle Royal of everything that changed my life. Paying homage and tribute to such influences and heroes like Batman, Superman, KISS, Nirvana, The early days of skating and the Bones Brigade, Bruce Lee & Quintin Tarantino, Conan the Barbarian, Excalibur, Cobra Kai, Wonder Woman, Lucha Libre, Wrestlemania, David Bowie, Star Wars, Boxing and more!”
The MANIA collection represents many notable firsts including his largest ‘Matador’ piece to date entitled ‘Solid Gold.’ His largest full-bodied Evillast entitled ‘In this Corner’ is also present in this collection, packed with detail using much more vibrant colors and patterns. The ‘Dirtyland,’ one of his most iconic characters, returns on a large scale more powerful than ever, with the return of spray paint elements in Viveros’s work.
About the artist… Brian M. Viveros is a CA based artist, best known for his highly detailed paintings of his anti-pin-up doe-eyed ‘Woman of Power’ and his Dirtyland universe. Viveros’ recognition and exposure was catalyzed by his participation in a major group exhibition in Switzerland in 1997 entitled: The Art of Porn, in which he exhibited alongside celebrated artist and academy award winner H.R. Giger. Since then, Viveros’ work has been widely exhibited in North America and Europe and has been published in many books and magazines. Brian also had his first art book published in 2015 entitled ’The Dirtyland: The Art of Brian M. Viveros’ published by Thinkspace Editions.
In Gallery II, Abigail Goldman’s latest body of work Instincts and Indulgences will be on display. Pulling from her personal experience as an investigator at the Public Defender in Bellingham, WA, a Las Vegas newspaper reporter, and investigator for the Federal Public Defender of Nevada, Goldman creates intricate die-o-ramas rendered in 1:87 scale. The diminutive size of the works is in contrast to the tableaus of gore and mayhem rendered within. Often both humorous and grotesque, the detailed pieces are a wholly engaging product of Goldman’s life-long fascination with crime and the dark side of the human psyche.
About the artist… Goldman’s die-o-ramas have been exhibited nationally and internationally, and her work has been featured by numerous media outlets, including the LA Times, New York Times, NPR, Atlas Obscura, Juxtapoz and Huffington Post. In March 2019, Goldman and her work were the subject of a documentary produced for Topic Magazine.
In Gallery III, Thinkspace presents Motelseven’s Waiting for Atlantis, an homage to Samuel Becket’s Waiting for Godot. Drawing on their own personal struggles about identity, fitting in, narcissism, and complexity, the resulting collection is a juxtaposition of the colorful and playful among tragedy and existential turmoil. Evolving from earlier works, the girls featured in the art are now defiant, determined to break free.
About the artist… Motelseven first started painting graffiti at 16 and was immediately hooked. They went on to have their first solo show at the age of 21. After a few successful shows and extensive travelling and painting the streets of Europe, they decided to take a 10 year hiatus from the art world, focusing on becoming a pastry chef, something they had always been passionate about. At this point Motelseven is at a crossroads – creating a world filled with melancholia, hopes, dreams, nostalgia – alongside the often brutal, fast paced environment of a fine dining kitchen.
Gallery IV features Huntz Liu’s latest body of work, Dissolution, utilizing his signature technique of layering material. Using a straightedge and knife, Huntz Liu cuts and layers paper to expose geometric/abstract compositions. These compositions are made up of shapes that sit on different planes, creating literal depth, while the composition itself creates a perceived depth. It is this intersection of the literal and perceived that informs the work; where the absence of material reveals form and the casting of shadow creates lines. Furthering his work, Liu has incorporated recent study of the collision between imaginary space and real space, playing particularly with shadow.
About the artist… Huntz Liu is a Taiwanese-American artist who works primarily with cut and layered paper. He lives and works in Los Angeles, California.