Photo Tour of Ador, PEZ, DRAGON76, Reen Barrera, and RYOL Exhibitions | December 11 – January 1 at Thinkspace Projects

Thinkspace presents a photo tour through Ador’s Tales of Past Times, PEZ’s One Smile, Many Styles, DRAGON76’s Noroshi, Reen Barrera’s Ugly Phases, and RYOL’s Reimagined Heroes exhibitions now on view through January 1st.

Continue reading Photo Tour of Ador, PEZ, DRAGON76, Reen Barrera, and RYOL Exhibitions | December 11 – January 1 at Thinkspace Projects

New Exhibitions from ADOR, PEZ, Dragon76, Reen Barrera, and Ryol showing at Thinkspace Projects | December 11 – January 1

Gallery One | ADOR | Tales of Past Times
Gallery One | PEZ | One Smile, Many Styles
Gallery Two | DRAGON76 | Noroshi
Viewing Room | REEN BARRERA | Ugly Phases
Viewing Room | RYOL | Reimagined Heroes

On view December 11, 2021 through Saturday, January 1, 2022

Opening Reception:
Saturday from 5PM-8PM
– Masks are required during your visit –

Thinkspace Projects is thrilled to present three debut west coast solo shows, each from a revered street artist. It is a tough task to be a relevant and versatile street artist for an extended period of time, but ADOR, PEZ, and DRAGON76 have accomplished just that, blessing walls around the world, and now the walls of Thinkspace Projects. As some of the very few street artists who have been consistently active for a long time, each has amassed the love and respect of many peers and fans around the globe. While the styles vary, this union of prominent street artists presents a cohesive experience that is not to be missed.

ADOR’s ‘Tales of Past Times’ is an incredible gallery show from the prominent street artist, presenting novel scenes that allow the viewer to create their own story and interpretation. The work contains the humanoid characters that have made ADOR’s murals so iconic, albeit on a smaller scale. In his newest works, he has created work that is influenced by, and even extracted from, tales of our own deviances. Although the characters are whimsical, they are deeply rooted in reality, thanks to ADOR’s observational nature.

“I think my main influence is watching people and staring at the surroundings. Everything that surrounds me inspires me, just as much as other artists do or a simple act as taking the metro. I look at everything and sometimes I invent stories. Our time is rich in exceptional phenomena. I used to visit exhibitions, watch movies to research what other people did.”

A spectator by nature and practice, ADOR’s collection is a feat of creativity, with pieces that work cohesively and as stand-alone creations. Each is meant to inspire a story, stoking the imaginations of the viewer. Although the intended audience changes, sometimes only connecting to those that are a kid at heart, other times only to the very young, the engaging nature of the work remains. 

“I would like people to create their own stories and use their imagination of my characters. I have my own story for each character, but it can change depending on my mood, maybe the weather! Each image I paint can work alone… but maybe each image is the following of another one.” ADOR hopes that people can see themselves in the whole story, and reflect on their own related experiences.

Staying relevant and innovative over a long period of time takes flexibility and the ability to evolve, two things PEZ has demonstrated. While elements of his signature style are constant, PEZ has mastered variability in an impressive way, as demonstrated by “One Smile, Many Styles.” For his debut west coast solo exhibition PEZ does not disappoint, delivering a myriad of styles for his long-time fans to enjoy.

“In the beginning my style was very basic, always characterized by the “smiling fish” character. In recent years it has evolved in such a way that I’ve created my own universe through different compositions that are currently very geometric. I’ve added a lot of color and balance to the compositions so that the character isn’t so isolated. I’ve searched a little more for the presence of characters from a universe that’s very influenced by graffiti and pop-art. So far the idea is always to evolve the style and change while taking from what I’ve been doing in recent years, but always trying to find a solid scheme in which the characters are sustained in a world of color and joy.”

In this latest body of work, PEZ has curated his recent endeavors. Rather than feeling confined to the painting, the medium he is best known for, he explores a variety of mediums, creating a cohesive experience that immerses viewers in what he has dubbed the “PEZ Universe.” He asks his fans to travel to this fantastical place exploring all his different styles and mediums. Here, one can find sculptures, acrylic works, spray paint based works, woodcuts, and other surprises. He aims to stimulate his signature joy in others.

In Gallery II, check out DRAGON76’s “Noroshi,” the artist’s debut solo exhibition with Thinkspace Projects and first on the west coast of the United States. The title of this show, “Noroshi”, is the Japanese word meaning smoke signal, a fitting title as smoke is prominent in much of the artist’s work. Furthermore, just as smoke spreads, DRAGON76 hopes to spread his style and message through this collection of work, enveloping viewers in his own world.

His intricate and complex style is rooted in a combination of Graffiti, Manga and Ukiyo-e. The landscapes and figures are defined by black shadows, mimicking traditional block printing, and are superimposed upon textured layers of vibrant colour, creating a striking effect. His work connects to the soul of the viewer with a touch that is passionate and full of vitality, rooted in his street art past.

DRAGON76’s style is constantly evolving, producing work that focus on the coexistence of conflicting things, such as past and future, stillness and movement, justice and evil, and this show is no exception.

As an added bonus this month, we’ve two very special collections of works on paper from two of our rising stars out of Southeast Asia. Following his show at the Pintô Art Museum in the Philippines, Reen Barrera is bringing his work back to Los Angeles again for a special collection of works on paper. ‘Ugly Phases’ follows up the artist’s sold out exhibition with us this past summer and showcases his strength and versatility while working with different mediums.

Barrera has taken the idiom “it’s written all over your face” to heart and beyond, crafting his work around a central character he created early on in his career as an artist. Ohlala embodies Barrera’s thoughts, displaying them through a variety of colors painted on the being’s face. This serves as a mechanism to silently communicate, focusing on the unspoken rather than what is loud and clear.

In this new series of works on paper, the Barrera finds himself embracing accidents like drips, smudges, and splatters, allowing these to lead him to the final product.

Alongside Barrera and following up his debut with our gallery this past October as part of our Chicago showcase, RYOL (aka Ryo Laksamana) returns with a small taste of what we can expect from his upcoming July 2022 debut U.S. solo exhibition. At a glance, RYOL’s paintings are charmingly whimsical; pop surrealist artworks skillfully done in an illustrative style reminiscent of the world of anime. The visual veneer of his artworks camouflages the fact the artist broaches subjects that are in contrast quite contemporary.

Upon closer examination, the subjects this young artist’s works address are far from frivolous. Among them, critiques of traditional patriarchic society, social behavior that is quick to judge others, as well as the fluidity of modern day gender and gender roles, to name a few.

In “Reimagined Heroes” we see RYOL reinterpreting some of his favorite pop culture icons. From Pikachu to Cookie Monster to Basquiat, RYOL takes on each and gives them a remix through his creative lens. The level of maturity already seen in RYOL’s aesthetics, and his deep awareness of the world around him, are indications that many exciting things lay ahead in the near future for this young creative.

About ADOR
ADOR (b. 1985 France) is a graffiti artist with murals dotting the globe. Born in Nantes, ADOR studied arts and grew up in the northwest of France, where he started tagging and drawing on the walls around him. ADOR utilises his playful and wonderful imagination to artfully blend passion, beauty, ugliness and life, all which are linked to his surroundings. His public murals often hide a very impactful message, presented by his never ending cast of playful human-like characters.

ADOR is very active on the international wall festival circuit and has murals from Montreal to Shanghai.  In recent years he has participated in Meeting Of Styles, Shenzhen – China; Over the Wall, with Le Voyage à Nantes, Nantes – France; Street Art Festival, Bratislava – Slovakia; Graffeurs au château, Tours – France; Can You rock, Montreal – Canada; and HipHop Session, Nantes – France.

About PEZ
PEZ (aka Jose Sabate | b.1976 Spain) is an urban artist from Barcelona, Spain and a pioneer, active in the scene since 1999.

PEZ (fish in Spanish) has been painting around the world for over two decades now, sharing his smiling fish character to pass on good vibrations for all that pass by his colorful murals, now located in over 20 countries.

About DRAGON76
DRAGON76’s (b. 1976 Japan) artwork is passionate and energetic. Known for doing artwork for CD covers and producing art that is heavily connected to music, he moved to New York in 2016 and has since expanded his artistic field. He went on to win  ART BATTLE NY three times, and then won US CHAMPION in 2018.. Since then he has continued work in the streets. Most recently he completed the largest mural in Texas for the United Nations ZERO HUNGER project, measuring 13,000 square feet in total.

About REEN BARRERA
Born in Paris, France, in 1990, Reen Barrera spent his childhood recreating his favorite cartoons with papier-mâché’. As a teenager, he repaired wooden church statues and would keep the excess wood scraps to make toys and figures out of. He naturally circled back into this practice after graduating from art school. With “Ohlala’ being the omphalos to his universe, Barrera presents a colorful commentary based on personal experiences.

About RYOL (aka RYO LAKSAMANA)
Ryo Laksamana (aka RYOL / b. 1993 Indonesia) grew up in the coastal city of Banyuwangi in East Java, Indonesia. Ryo, grew up with Sunday morning cartoon movie series, “Emo” music, and Indonesian translated manga comics. Laksamana is a recent graduate of the prestigious Institut Seni Indonesia in Yogyakarta. This young artist’s career, however, began much earlier while he was still a student, and in the past few years his artworks have been exhibited quite extensively within and beyond the borders of Indonesia.

Hebru Brantley’s ‘Saints & Shepherds’ at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art | December 3, 2021 – March 6, 2022

HEBRU BRANTLEY
Saints & Shepherds

Curated by Thinkspace Projects and the FWMoA

Opening Reception:
Friday, December 3 from 6-9pm
* artist will be in attendance

On view December 4, 2021 through March 6, 2022 at:
Fort Wayne Museum of Art
311 E. Main Street
Fort Wayne, Indiana 46802
www.fwmoa.org

Saints & Shepherds is an exploration of modern-day mythology through the contemporary Afro-Futuristic lens of Hebru Brantley.

In Brantley’s Negros Mythos world, heroes can be Saints and Shepherds – Shepherds, the Purveyors of Culture, and Saints: the ‘outliers’ – those that are blossoming into new leaders by bringing foward a new way of thought. Saints often have their story embellished and revered when they pass on, while in their lifetime their ideas or ways are not always welcomed. This exhibition is a celebration of being a Shepherd and a Saint, echoing the process of going from adolescence to adulthood, from supporter to leader.

In the context of Sainthood, we are challenged to explore the definition of a hero. Themes of idolization and leadership are explored. In the current cultural system, previously accepted norms and expectations are being called to question and one is increasingly challenged to choose who their role models are based on their own set of values. This show explores the dichotomy of breaking down past role models by cultural reappropriation, while also building them up in the celebration of mythology itself. There is also a duality in the concept of reappropriation – where the current culture has often appropriated aspects of black culture, Hebru flips this concept, reimagining traditionally Anglo-Saxon superheroes as people of color.

About Hebru Brantley
Hebru Brantley creates narrative-driven work revolving around his conceptualized iconic characters which are utilized to address complex ideas around nostalgia, the mental psyche, power, and hope. The color palettes, pop-art motifs, and characters themselves create accessibility around Brantley’s layered and multifaceted beliefs. Majorly influenced by the South Side of Chicago’s Afro Cobra movement in the 1960s and 70s, Brantley uses the lineage of mural and graffiti work as a frame to explore his inquiries. Brantley applies a plethora of mediums from oil, acrylic, watercolor and spray paint to non-traditional mediums such as coffee and tea. Brantley’s work challenges the traditional view of the hero or protagonist and his work insists on a contemporary and distinct narrative that shapes and impacts the viewer’s gaze.

Recognized internationally, Hebru Brantley has exhibited in Chicago, Hong Kong, London, San Francisco, Atlanta, Miami, Seattle, Los Angeles and New York including Art Basel Switzerland, Art Basel Miami, Scope NYC, and Frieze London. Brantley has been recognized in publications including the Chicago Tribune, Forbes, WWD, HypeBeast, Complex Magazine, the Chicago Sun-Times, and the New York Post.

Collectors of his work include LeBron James, Jay-Z & Beyonce, Lenny Kravitz, George Lucas, and Rahm Emanuel, among others. Brantley has collaborated with brands like Nike, Hublot, and Adidas.

In October 2019, Brantley opened an experiential fine art installation fueled by the narrative of his characters FLYBOY and LIL MAMA. The 6,000-square-foot installation in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood hosted over 23,000 ticketed guests and offered them limited-edition merchandise. Brantley currently resides in Los Angeles where he is expanding into content creation including the adaptation of the FLYBOY Universe through his media company, Angry Hero.

Brantley earned a B.A. in Film from Clark Atlanta University and has a background in Design and Media Illustration.

Virtual Tour through Boris Anje, Oscar Joyo, Stephanie Buer, and Jimbo Lateef Exhibitions

Thinkspace presents a virtual tour through Boris Anje’s ‘Black is the Color of Gold’, Oscar Joyo’s ‘HOME_BODY’, Stephanie Buer’s ‘Hiraeth’, and Jimbo Lateef’s ‘Shades of Feelings’ exhibitions now on view through December 4th. 

Click here for the virtual tour: https://players.cupix.com/p/rnk5zi2U

Tour developed by Birdman

Artist Boris Anje featured in Juxtapoz for his exhibition ‘Black is the Color of Gold”

“For his upcoming solo show, we perceive a pivotal, landmark moment for the artist.“ – JUXTAPOZ