Virtual Tour: https://players.cupix.com/p/H0t97I9j
Virtual tour created by Birdman
Thinkspace presents a photo tour of “Intersections” featuring new work from Alvaro Naddeo, Manuel Zamudio, Sean Banister, and Gustavo Rimada. Along with Andrea Aragon’s “Somas Magicas” showing in Gallery Two, and new works from Marie Claude Marquis, Eshinlokun Wasiu, and Alex Face in our viewing room.Continue reading Photo Tour of February 2022 Exhibitions
Thank you to all those who attended the opening reception of “Intersections” featuring new work from Alvaro Naddeo, Manuel Zamudio, Sean Banister, and Gustavo Rimada. Along with Andrea Aragon’s latest solo exhibition “Somas Magicas” showing in Gallery Two, and our Viewing Room showcasing new works from Marie-Claude Marquis, Eshinlokun Wasiu, and Alex Face.
All exhibitions are on view at Thinkspace Projects now through February 26th.Continue reading Opening Reception of February 2022 Exhibitions
Thinkspace Projects is pleased to present Sean Banister as part of our new group exhibition, “Intersections”. The exhibition is a solo show for each artist in their own right, and continues to build on their momentum into 2022. Each artist’s work is unified by storytelling, displaying an array of memories and experiences within the walls of the gallery.
Sean Banister uses this show as an expansion and continuation of his work in 2020, delving into the identity of humans as storytellers and collectors. Having developed a strong interest in how the items we interact with and collect help us to craft our own self-narratives, Banister explores how this affects image and individuality, from the way one sees themself personally to the way they exist and are viewed in the world. While each of his pieces for “Intersections” is unique, together they all act as facets of the same experience of living in our current time.
In our interview with Sean Banister, he shares why he loves Pinterest, how he is spending more time on his art, and the mural that brought him back to painting.
Can you share with us a little bit about your upbringing and where you are currently creating?
I was born, raised, and currently living and working in Riverside, CA. As the oldest of 3 boys (I’m 8 and 9 years older than my brothers), we spent a lot of our time making up games in the backyard, playing in the pool, or exploring new video games and board games together. Building things out of random materials in the backyard, mostly from cardboard, and modding our nerf guns to try to get them to shoot faster were all major parts of how we spent our time growing up. Even if I wasn’t making art by myself, creating things was a part of our family culture. I love to travel and experience new places, but I always love coming back to SoCal and feel a very deep attachment to it as a place and a culture.
What was the inspiration behind this latest body of work? What themes have you been exploring in your work?
The latest body of work is my effort to continue and expand on the ideas that I started in 2020. Humans are storytellers. We are also collectors, and I’ve always had an interest in how the items we interact with and collect help us to craft our own self-narratives about who we are personally and how we exist in the world.
Could you share what your day-to-day looks like when working in your studio?
I’ve been a full-time high school teacher since 2004, so my typical day in the studio occurs after I get off work and have had a chance to reset my brain. I really enjoy the act of painting, but before I jump into it I like to take a 30-min power nap, or if the weather is nice I’ll go for a quick walk. Once I get the gear-switch handled, then I click into a playlist and get to work. Somewhere in the evening, I’ll take a quick dinner break, maybe about 30-40 min, then back to work until somewhere between 8-10 pm. It’s easy to slip through an evening while painting, and I could go later but would definitely pay for it through the next day of work. Weekends get turned into studio work time too, but that’s a bit more loose depending on what’s going on. Some days will be a few hours and others will be a longer workday than I can fit in Monday-Friday.
What’s in your “artistic toolbox”? Are you particular about brands that you use?
As far a brands go, I’m a fan of Trekell brushes and almost exclusively use them for my work. For paints, I use Nova Color as I like the flow, but am feeling a need to branch out in the near future for more color options. I paint on cradled wood panels that I make myself, especially since companies’ supply chain have recently stopped working. Aside from those essentials, I use frog-tape masking tape from the hardware store, which gets me the nice crisp edges when I need them, a squirter bottle to wet my working surface to help achieve a variety of effects, and some house paint brushes for larger blending effects. Also, a blow-dryer is a big part of my work flow as it sets my paint and gets me to be able to work on adding the next layer.
How do you like to unwind outside of the studio?
I like my garage hobbies (my garage is like a woodshed/maker space), various kinds of physical activity, watching movies/ binging shows, spending time with loved ones, spending an evening at the local pinball arcade, playing music, etc. Unwinding is a weird idea though, as sometimes I feel like work helps me unwind; like it’s de-stressful to get at it, whether it’s at school or at the easel. My experience is probably different than other artists as I’m not full-time in the studio, so for me it feels like a balancing act. Sometimes my stress comes from the studio and other times it’s a stress-relief to be working in there.
Do you have a process for sourcing and/or keeping track of your inspiration?
While I have only really been creating work in earnest for a bit over 2 years, and my process is still really new, I do try to be intentional about how I collect input that my subconscious can then sort out before I compose a piece. I keep a sketchbook where I work out compositions, but I find that my freest work happens on scraps that I don’t really care about. I think when it’s a scrap, I don’t care if it’s trash and I don’t let my self-judgment hold me back as much. When I get a good scratch-paper thumbnail that I like I snap a pic to keep on my phone. I like mining ideas through random collections I keep on Pinterest as well, which I like because their program can take me down some pretty interesting visual rabbit-holes and lead me to a place I might not have thought up otherwise.
What was on your playlist while creating this new body of work?
As a pandemic project, some friends of ours made a great 80s playlist that’s about 45-50 hours long, so it’s great to put that on shuffle and just zone out on the work. It’s a good mix of genres from that era too. I like listening to new alternative music, hip-hop, and dance stuff too, but I don’t have much energy in spending my time curating playlists for those while I’m working, so while every now and then I’ll listen to the playlists Spotify makes for me, I mostly don’t wanna think about what I’m listening to and just zero in on the painting. So for 2020 I’ve gotten a lot of mileage out of that 80s playlist from my friends.
Most artists express themselves creatively as a child, but there is a moment when a shift occurs from just being creatively inclined to being more artistically minded – do you know when that moment was for you?
I got labeled as an art kid by my classmates and teachers through elementary so I was thinking about art pretty early as a part of my young identity. Thinking seriously about art the way I do now didn’t happen for me though until like 2018 as I shifted my priorities back to being an artist. I had been doing freelance graphic design for local companies as way to be in art outside of my work as a teacher, but it got to a point where I hated doing that and wanted to just have fun making art for myself again, so I got back into painting after a very enjoyable mural job I did for a local (now my favorite) arcade that helped me realize what I had been missing out on. It was really working on that mural job where I was in this large space, by myself, up on a ladder painting my designs on the walls and listening to music that I was like, “hell yeah, this is it” and so from then on I just try to keep taking steps toward more of that feeling.
Have you ever worked outside creating public murals? If not, would you be interested in pursuing one day?
I have only worked on outdoor murals while helping friends on their projects and volunteering at a few mural festivals here in SoCal. I love being outdoors working on large projects, and the physicality of painting large areas is also a fun aspect. That kind of work is exhausting, but it’s the good type. I definitely want to get into doing my own outdoor murals in the near future.
What words of wisdom would you share with your past self when you were just starting to create art? Is there anything in your artistic journey that you wish you may have done differently?
If we’re talking about my past self from 2018/2019 when I was making a return to art, I would say make more art, but there were a lot of factors at play. I don’t know how healthy it would have been to expect myself to do more than I was at that time given my schedule and learning stage. If we’re talking about a younger me though, like teenage me, I would talk myself into developing a sketchbook discipline asap. Mostly to develop a habit of generating ideas, both good and bad without judgment, but it would also be an added bonus of having 20-30 more years of drawing mileage behind me now for sure. I also would have liked to have had an art school experience, but while I’ll always wonder “what if” because it’s always a tempting game to play, the thing I can do is do my best now so that future-me won’t be looking back wishing I did this or that differently.
What did you find to be the biggest challenge of 2020 for you?
Trying to feel normal in a year where nothing felt normal. As a high school teacher, the whole year was totally lame, but I had to try to make it worthwhile somehow for my students and myself. As an artist, I was trying to continue to discover myself and develop my practice, at the same time as discovering and developing my new and expanding relationship/s within the art world, grasping at any scrap of info I could find on how the various ins and outs of that world work. I get a lot of enjoyment out of exploring and interacting with the world as well but that was a big pandemic no-no. So yeah, just establishing norms in a topsy turvy world was the biggest challenge.
What is your proudest accomplishment of 2021? Life thus far? (can be art-related or not)
For almost my entire teaching career I have both taught in the classroom for my full workday (first 15yrs as an English lit. teacher and the last 3 teaching art) and coached the aquatic teams at my high school after school almost year-round (yes through summers too). This year I knew had to finally make the full split away from coaching after 17 years so I could have room in my life to make art, and that wasn’t easy to do. I’m very proud of what I accomplished in my time coaching at my school, but I am also really proud in making that step for myself to be able to feel the type of fulfillment that I get from painting. It’s really a huge change in my life that I’m still adjusting to, and I’m very excited to have taken that step.
What big projects do you have coming up in 2022 and 2023 that you’d like to share more about?
I still feel very early on in my art journey, so I’ve not been jumping out of my skin to find new commitments to fill up 2022 and 2023 with. While I’m sure to be on the hunt for new projects after this show opens with Thinkspace, the biggest project I have to work on this year is myself, setting goals and enriching my practice as an artist.
Sean Banister Artist Statement for “Intersections”
With this new body of work, Banister continues where he left off in his 2020 Thinkspace Projects show “A Tourist at Home”, showcasing in each painting how the objects we keep in our lives can define how we see ourselves and our place in the world. While each of his pieces for “Intersections” is unique, together they all act as facets of the same experience of living in our current time.
Gallery One | SEAN BANISTER, ALVARO NADDEO, GUSTAVO RIMADA and MANUEL ZAMUDIO | Intersections
Gallery Two | ANDREA ARAGON | Somas Magicas
Viewing Room | MARIE CLAUDE MARQUIS | Thinking of You
Viewing Room | ESHINLOKUN WASIU | New Works
Viewing Room | ALEX FACE | New Works
On view February 5 – February 26, 2022
Saturday, February 5 from 5pm-9pm | artists will be in attendance
– Masks are required during your visit –
Thinkspace Projects is thrilled to present an all-new group exhibition and all-new solo show simultaneously, continuing their 2022 momentum. Each artist’s work is unified by storytelling, displaying an array of memories and experiences within the walls of the gallery.
In Gallery One, four artists join forces for Intersections, filling the space with complementary and contrasting works from Sean Banister, Alvaro Naddeo, Gustavo Rimada, and Manuel Zamudio. The exhibition is incredibly relevant, drawing on themes of time, identity, and blurring boundaries to explore true connection.
Southern California-based artist Sean Banister uses this show as an expansion and continuation of his work in 2020, delving into the identity of humans as storytellers and collectors. Having developed a strong interest in how the items we interact with and collect help us to craft our own self-narratives, Banister explores how this affects image and individuality, from the way one sees themself personally to the way they exist and are viewed in the world. While each of his pieces for “Intersections” is unique, together they all act as facets of the same experience of living in our current time.
Alvaro Naddeo approaches Intersections with the desire to create work that mixes personal memories with the collective memories of our society. In pulling textures from the places Naddeo has personally been and incorporating them into greater social and political commentary, he is able to tell stories that may not have previously been told. He works to give space to the marginalized and the minorities, “those who can see and smell everything good that America has, but are never allowed to get there.”
Gustavo Rimada brings the perspective of his own ancestry to the show. This body of work is part of an on-going series from Rimada, which tells a story about how our ancestors connect with us. “Whether it’s celebrating Dia de los Muertos in my work or telling old folk stories about our ancestors returning to nature, my goal is to create a space where you can feel the connection and spirit between nature and the afterlife.” This series is heavily influenced by his culture, emphasizing the connection between humans and nature from the day they are born to the day they pass away. With these works, Rimada aims to translate that journey, aiding viewers in understanding.
Manuel Zamudio also brings the theme of life and death into his collection, focusing on the transition between them. He maintains the post-apocalyptic world that he had built with his previous solo show here at Thinkspace, but delves into architecture and urban landscape as a foundation for the exploration of the afterlife. With new-age ghost-inspired characters Zamudio explores the delicate line between life and death, which grows thinner every day. He highlights the fragile boundaries between body and soul, life and death, day and night, living in the transitions.
In Gallery Two, Andrea Aragon fills the space with her latest solo show Somas Magicas. Aragon draws upon her own experiences and surrounding community to create breath-taking oil paintings that do not sugar coat the human experience. Aragon’s goal is to present an awareness and give a perspective of individuals whose story has yet to be fully told, reaching a broader audience than they might on their own. The artist hopes her works sheds light on how similar we are as inhabitants of this earth, and how we can benefit from just a little bit more understanding. With each piece, Aragon evokes compassion.
As an added bonus, in our viewing room we’re excited to showcase a small new collection of plates from longtime gallery favorite Marie Claude Marquis, alongside new works from recent Thinkspace Family new comers Eshinlokun Wasiu and Alex Face.
About Sean Banister
Sean Banister is a SoCal artist. Working as a high school teacher for the past 18 years, he has always been a passionate learner and works to bring that excitement for learning to the classroom. Banister is largely a self-taught artist, having pursued a degree in English and taken a just few very encouraging classes at the local community college to get back into drawing and painting after a long time away. In his work, Banister often chooses objects and their human counterparts to be the subject of his work, drawing out the relationships between them. Banister’s work draws out the narratives stored in the items in his paintings to reveal feelings we have about who we are and how we chose to exist.
About Alvaro Naddeo
Originally from São Paulo, Brazil, Naddeo has lived in Lima, New York City, and is currently based in Los Angeles. These urban environments shaped his memory and permeate most of his work. Naddeo’s father is an illustrator, and as a child he spent many hours drawing and watching him work. Constantly encouraged by his father, he was both inspired and intimidated. At 17, the intimidation got the best of him and he quit, choosing to pursue a career in advertising as an Art Director. This allowed him to exercise his interest in art, without requiring mastery with the pencil or brush. Twenty years later, while living in New York City he found himself inspired to once again pick up the brush. Now he is back to painting, this time Naddeo is not quitting.
About Gustavo Rimada
Born in Torreon, Mexico, Rimada and his family immigrated to California when he was seven years old. Raised in Indio, California, he began taking art classes at a young age and attended The Art Institute in Santa Monica California. After September 11th 2001, Rimada was inspired to join the Army, serving three years before returning to his true love, art. Rimada painted on any surface he could find, canvas, shoes, bags, etc, eventually finding the tattoo culture that inspired him to further pursue his passion for painting. When Rimada is not painting, he is a devoted father and family man.
About Manuel Zamudio
Zamudio is a painter, a muralist, and a storyteller. Born in Mexico City, Zamudio made his way to the talent-rich city of McAllen, Texas in 1992 at the age of 5. While dealing with the challenges that often come with assimilating to a starkly different culture at a very young age, Zamudio found refuge by immersing himself in art. As a self-taught artist, he started perfecting his technique by replicating comic books, without knowing or understanding the human figure and the concepts of color schemes. As he grew older, he started taking an interest in the urban culture of South Texas, learning color schemes, perception, shadow, and so on from local graffiti artists. Now, Zamudio has taken his passion into a new path: storytelling. He has displayed his artwork in numerous galleries and museums in the United States and Mexico. His new line of work has been immensely inspired by great works of cinematography, street art, and post-apocalyptic sci-fi novels. His new work explores new methods of how to bring cinematography onto the canvas. Zamudio is a painter, a muralist, and a storyteller.
About Marie Claude Marquis
Excited to have a collection of 25 new insults on antique plates from Canada’s Marie Claude Marquis on view this February in our viewing room for her mini show Thinking of You.
MC Marquis is an artist whose practice is rather multidisciplinary. Touching both graphic design and visual arts, she is inspired by souvenirs, nostalgia, pop culture, Québec identity and her own emotions which she expresses with humor, a feminine touch and a colorful sensitivity.
In her gallery work, Marie-Claude has mastered the art of re-appropriation in giving found objects new meaning. That way she can give these objects a second life, prolong their existence and reduce her own environmental impact. Mainly by typographical interventions, she always finds a way to give new meanings to these antiques. The result of her work is often humorous, sometimes irreverent but always keeps a big focus on aesthetics
About Andrea Aragon
In Gallery Two, Andrea Aragon fills the space with her debut solo show Somas Magicas. As an artist and first-generation Mexican American, Andrea Aragon has chosen oil painting as an avenue to illustrate and shape the human experience within her community. She draws upon the community around her, the majority of which can be categorized as lower to lower middle-class America. Aragon uses her ongoing knowledge of political, cultural, and social understandings to entice a juxtaposed narrative that invites the viewer to tap into their self-consciousness, ultimately creating raw and relatable works.
About Esihinlokun Wasiu
Eshinlokun Wasiu (b. 1998, Lagos, Nigeria) is a full time surrealist artist who sees life’s challenges as a tool for creating his masterpieces. And has been prolific in producing works that speak about the society and its effect on the people around. Culture, identification and power of humanity are a few aspects of his current research and artistic practice.
Eshinlokun Wasiu studied Business Administration at Yaba College of Education, Nigeria. His interest in art, as well as his career began while he was a kid with the support of his mother. Inspired by issues relating to him and those who are around him, he began creating works that reflect the everyday struggles of people, with the hopes of making a change in people life and way of thinking. He exercises himself by using of charcoal and acrylic paints to create silhouette that seem to have been in bond and value.
Eshinlokun is reintroducing the “ Surrealism “ movement in a way the world will appreciate in a different form. His also part of the title deed art collective curated by Ken Nwadiogbu 2019/2020. Also had a residency at AAF ( African Artists’ Foundation ) in the year 2020
Eshinlokun Wasiu is constantly revitalizing his practice by challenging modes of Black representation. His oeuvres do not just encompass various forms of drawing using acrylic and charcoal, but most recently transcends into photography, sculpture, installation and performance art.
About Alex Face
Patcharapol Tangruen (aka Alex Face / b. 1981) is a well-known and influential graffiti artist in Thailand. Alex studied architecture at Bangkok’s King Mongktut Institute of Technology and earned a Bachelor’s Degree in the Department of Fine and Applied Arts. An interest in architecture led Alex Face to explore and wander the streets and back alleys of Bangkok for abandoned buildings, sites that he eventually used as a canvas to develop his street art.
Using Alex Face as his alter ego, the artist attempts to create a link with the urban population, the underprivileged of Bangkok and the surrounding provinces. His iconic character showcases the adventures of a disillusioned child in a baby rabbit costume who looks wise beyond his years, at first glance appearing cute, but all the time worrying about the future of our world.
Thinkspace was founded in 2005; now in LA’s thriving West Adams District, the gallery has garnered an international reputation as one of the most active and productive exponents of the New Contemporary Art Movement. Maintaining its founding commitment to the promotion and support of its artists, Thinkspace has steadily expanded its roster and diversified its projects, creating collaborative and institutional opportunities all over the world. Founded in the spirit of forging recognition for young, emerging, and lesser-known talents, the gallery is now home to artists from all over the world, ranging from the emerging, mid-career, and established.
Though the New Contemporary Art Movement has remained largely unacknowledged by the vetted institutions of the fine art world and its arbiters of ‘high culture,’ the future promises a shift. The Movement’s formative aversion to the establishment is also waning in the wake of its increased visibility, institutional presence, and widespread popularity. Thinkspace has sought to champion and promote the unique breadth of the Movement, creating new opportunities for the presentation of its artists and work. An active advocate for what is now one of the longest extant organized art movements in history, Thinkspace is an established voice for its continued growth and evolution, proving their commitment by expanding its projects beyond Los Angeles, exhibiting with partner galleries and organizations in Berlin, Hong Kong, London, New York City, Detroit, Chicago, and Honolulu among many others, participating in International Art Fairs, and curating New Contemporary content for Museums. Committed to the vision, risk, and exceptional gifts of its artists, the gallery is first and foremost a family. From the streets to the museums, and from the “margins” to the white cube, Thinkspace is re-envisioning what it means to be “institutional.”