STRAAT is proud to announce SHARED EXPERIENCE, a two-person exhibition at STRAAT Gallery featuring American artists Kayla Mahaffey and Carlos Ramirez, co-hosted by Los Angeles-based Thinkspace Projects.
SHARED EXPERIENCE highlights the ongoing racial pressures and class separation still rampant in the United States and how Kayla Mahaffey (b. 1994 on Chicago’s South Side) and Carlos Ramirez (b.1967 in the Coachella Valley of Indio, California), even though decades separate their formative years, each faced many of the same obstacles growing up and still do to this day, simply for being a person of color in America.
This exhibition celebrates one of the museum’s ongoing and long term aims; to show the diversity and popularity of our worldwide street art and graffiti culture.
The opening reception for SHARED EXPERIENCE is Saturday, August 20th, 2022 from 5-9 PM, and will feature refreshments and live DJ’s. Both artists will be in attendance along with the curator, Thinkspace’s Andrew Hosner.
1033 WC, Amsterdam
Kayla Mahaffey is a contemporary artist and muralist specializing in illustration and fine arts. Her style being a mixture of pop art and Afro-surrealism, makes for a bright and colorful experience that packs a punch and sends an important message with each piece.
Born on the Chicago South Side, she has a strong sense of resilience and community that is displayed in her art time and time again.
She studied at the American Academy of Art in downtown Chicago, taking some classes, before leaving in 2017 to pursue art full-time
Carlos Ramirez’ painting and sculpture work often speaks of the inequalities within Mexican American communities and champions the common man as underdog.
Snakes, spiders, scorpions, and other bits of nature from his former life as a date farmer in the Coachella Valley in Indio, California, appear mixed in with Catholic symbolism, aliens, gang members, pop-culture references, and commercial imagery, giving brand logos and religious icons the same attention and placement.
Carlos’ work is tremendously resourceful, scavenging for creative materials within various abandoned desert locales.
As a former member of the seminal street art duo ‘The Date Farmers’, Carlos’ paintings continue to evolve, becoming denser and more meaningful while remaining alluring and magical.