Video Tour of New Works from Super A, Manuel Zamudio, and Kyle Bryant

Thinkspace is pleased to present SUPER A’s ‘Apostasy’, Manuel Zamudio’s ‘Sunsets In The Apocalypse’, and Kyle Bryant’s ‘Out of Many, One’.

December 12, 2020 – January 2, 2021

SUPER A –  ‘Apostasy

Inspiration behind the exhibition: Before I started this series called “Trapped” one of the returning subjects that always inspires me is contradiction. Two opposites that create an interesting tension.

I wanted to show two worlds in one piece. I came up with some ideas to get it done but all too complex.

While writing down some ideas about the fake world that surrounds us I tried to literally wrap a cartoon version around the real version. And link it to daily life where people are comfortable with wearing a mask so we don’t have to show who we really are. Interesting how for example we worship cartoon characters like Mickey Mouse but when we see a real mouse we jump on our chair and start screaming.

From there the Trapped series was born. For me it came at the right moment as I was always telling one story in one painting, and then immediately move on to the next which was always pretty exhausting and I found I got a bit tired of constantly digging into all the things that somehow frustrated me to come up with new concepts

So for now it’s quite enjoyable to focus on this theme and slowly develop new ideas

Manuel Zamudio – ‘Sunsets In The Apocalypse

Inspiration behind the exhibition: Ever since I was a child I was very interested in the apocalypse, sci-fi, comics, and those kinds of things. In the last couple of years, I started getting into cinematography and trying to understand films a little bit more visually. So when I wanted to start changing the kind of work I was doing, transitioning from graffiti characters to more of a realistic body of work, I decided to use my love of film and my love of apocalyptic storytelling as inspiration. Then once the pandemic hit, I feel my work took much of a darker turn as far as the apocalyptic scenery. Like the classic line goes “does art imitates life?” here, life imitates art.

Kyle Bryant – ‘Out of Many, One

Inspiration behind the exhibition: I’ve always been obsessed with birds in places that they don’t belong. There’s something that gives me great joy about a bird flying around in a bus station or airport. One night I had a dream that I was waiting for a plane and was literally a part of the flock. That’s when I decided to do a huge amount of birds.

The project itself has two meanings. On a personal level it’s about growth and development. Like many people in this world, I’ve had my struggles. I ran from those struggles with alcohol as my running mate and eventually became a person I didn’t even recognize. Through getting sober I have learned that what’s important is me, and my mental health. The idea of using many birds to create one image is a metaphor for all of the little things that need to be in place to have a life worth living, to be the best version of yourself that you can be.

The broader meaning for this project is about finding common ground amongst each other in society. Far too often we are divided by our differences. We have all of the little subsets of society fighting with their opposing subset over the little details and they miss the big picture, that we’re all just pawns in this game and actually have very little control over anything. I believe if we put our egos aside, focus on our similarities rather than our differences, we will be able to come together as a human race to solve the problems that face us and future generations.

Information on visiting Thinkspace Projects

We are offering timed visits each Saturday during the remaining run of our December exhibitions. Appointments can be scheduled by visiting the following link: https://thinkspaceprojects.setmore.com/

Please note that masks will be required at all times and social distancing enforced. There are no exceptions, as we want to assure the health and safety of our staff and patrons.

Video courtesy of Birdman

NEW LOCATION:
4217 W. Jefferson Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90016

Inside the Studio of Super A as he prepares for ‘Apostasy’

Inside the Studio of Super A as he prepares for ‘Apostasy,’ Thinkspace’s third solo presentation with the artist. The exhibition features compositions that strip cartoon, fairytale, or pop-cultural archetypes of their fantasy and veneer, revealing the realistic or historical counterparts beneath them. An apt commentary on the dissimulation of popular cultural mythology, Super A deconstructs its theater.

Inspiration behind ‘Apostasy‘:

Before I started this series called “Trapped” one of the returning subjects that always inspires me is contradiction. Two opposites that create an interesting tension. I wanted to show two worlds in one piece. I came up with some ideas to get it done but all too complex. While writing down some ideas about the fake world that surrounds us I tried to literally wrap a cartoon version around the real version. And link it to daily life where people are comfortable with wearing a mask so we don’t have to show who we really are. Interesting how for example we worship cartoon characters like Mickey Mouse but when we see a real mouse we jump on our chair and start screaming. From there the Trapped series was born. For me it came at the right moment as I was always telling one story in one painting, and then immediately move on to the next which was always pretty exhausting and I found I got a bit tired of constantly digging into all the things that somehow frustrated me to come up with new concepts So for now it’s quite enjoyable to focus on this theme and slowly develop new ideas.

Opening Reception: Saturday, December 12 from noon to 6 pm in Gallery I* masks and social distancing required at all times

Interview with Super A for upcoming exhibition ‘Apostasy’

Thinkspace is pleased to present ‘Apostasy’ the third solo presentation of works from Dutch artist Stefan Thelen, better known by his moniker Super A.

Super A, creates hyperreal murals and studio paintings that explore the world of human contradiction. Through the combination of realistic and surreal imagery, Super A is often dealing in visual metaphor and social messaging, questioning the ideologies and cultural myths we’ve become too complacent at accepting without critique. Interested in the interrogation of objectivity and its ultimate exposure as a construct, Super A combines elements of realism with the free reign of fiction to produce unexpected results.

In anticipation of ‘Apostasy’, our interview with Super A discusses the inspiration behind his “Trapped” series, his creative process, and a strategy for achieving world peace.

For those unfamiliar with your work, can you share a little about your artistic background and how you became connected with Thinkspace Projects?

Growing up as a kid I was always drawing. It helped me to process and get rid of things.

At the age of 13 my brother introduced me to painting graffiti.

I was hooked from day one.

Coming from a small village in The Netherlands where graffiti wasn’t a common thing we found this railway overpass where we’d spend our days and nights, hanging out and painting with friends.

After finishing my education as a house/sign painter I wanted to go to art school but being too young I decided to pursue an education and go in the direction of graphic design in Rotterdam (The Netherlands)

During my second year I followed an internship at Diego Terroba Studios and started working at the studio specialized in cinema painting and set design. I got introduced to all kinds of crafts like sculpting, decoration and painting while working for Warner Bros and Disney theme parks.

While I was still working for the studio I started making personal work. And slowly my personal work became more and more important so I slowly said goodbye to that fake fantasy world to totally focus on creating my own world. All the skills that I’ve learned through the years are still used till this day to translate ideas into my personal work.

One day I got invited by Thinkspace Projects to join a group show and soon after that a solo exhibition.

When going to LA I had a chat with the guy sitting next to me on the plane who asked me if it was my first time visiting LA. I told him the first time I went to LA was exactly 20 years ago when I won a drawing contest. I went there with my mom and brother and could have never thought I would travel the world because of doing what I really like.

What is the inspiration behind this latest body of work?

Before I started this series called “Trapped” one of the returning subjects that always inspires me is contradiction. Two opposites that create an interesting tension.

I wanted to show two worlds in one piece. I came up with some ideas to get it done but all too complex.

While writing down some ideas about the fake world that surrounds us I tried to literally wrap a cartoon version around the real version. And link it to daily life where people are comfortable with wearing a mask so we don’t have to show who we really are. Interesting how for example we worship cartoon characters like Mickey Mouse but when we see a real mouse we jump on our chair and start screaming.

From there the Trapped series was born. For me it came at the right moment as I was always telling one story in one painting, and then immediately move on to the next which was always pretty exhausting and I found I got a bit tired of constantly digging into all the things that somehow frustrated me to come up with new concepts

So for now it’s quite enjoyable to focus on this theme and slowly develop new ideas

Do you have any pre-studio rituals that help you tap into creative flow?

Most of the time I create my ideas and designs in the evening.

The next day I enjoy going to my studio really early in the morning when most people are still sleeping. Put my phone on flight mode, have a coffee, press play and go!!!

When starting, music is an important element. I can really enjoy moments when the right playlist for the right type of work is playing.

What is your creative process like, and was there any evolution to the process while developing this body of work?

The subject or base of the work is all pretty much figured out beforehand, but during the first phase of the painting I try to keep as much space for improvisation and happy accidents as possible. Mostly with my scenery works I try to paint impulsive and raw backgrounds to then go into details on the subject. This way I try to create contrast and put the focus on the subject.

What was the most challenging piece in this body of work and why?

Sculptures in this style are definitely a big challenge. I noticed gravity is a motherfucker.

While working on this series I made a few sculptures but always after I did one, I’d have to park other sculptural ideas and focus on paintings again because it can be pretty frustrating. It’s always challenging to combine materials.

I really like the balance between focusing on studio work and painting murals outdoors.

Who are some of your creative influences? They do not have to be painters, but those whose work has inspired you and impacted you creatively. 

It’s definitely the close friends and family around me that really inspire and motivate me. They form the base.

Next to that there are so many unbelievable artists, musicians, persons out there that influence me in a way. And I’m not talking about the social media influencer influenza.

Not sure about all that internet distraction.

Go out, take a walk in nature, and take your time to think. Wake up!

You’re casting a reality show where five pop culture icons (real or animated) are living in a house for 90 days, who would be cast and why?

Interesting question. Can’t come up with an interesting combination of five pop culture icons at the moment but it would be good to lock up five world leaders that are at war or wanna start a war and let them create world peace within 90 days.

If you were given the power to master any skill or become an expert in any subject you wanted within a 24 hour period what would you focus on?

I would become a Buddhist monk and focus on nothing for 24 hours as I sometimes go nuts, being a restless idiot.

It’s an unprecedented time as we’re experiencing a global pandemic. How have you been coping/ navigating life during this time?

Yes it’s a surreal time.

For me personally not that much changed. Of course we’re limited in a lot of things but I’m happy I can hang out with my close ones and go to my studio

For some it’s really tough which is sad. It is what it is. The positive thing about this negative time is that it can give people time to think and slow down a bit as we live in a world which is based on breaking records.

Sad that I can’t come to the opening of my show at Thinkspace because of this situation.

Hopefully it will be better soon. Let’s hope for the best.

If your work inspired a Ben & Jerry’s ice cream flavor what would be the ingredients and the name of the pint? 

Let’s swap Ben for Tom and make it a Tom & Jerry Chase Cheesecake flavor.

Or a Vanilla Ice taste with a “Ice T” punch (literally ; ) Vanilla Ice T flavor.

Opening Reception: Saturday, December 12 from noon to 6 pm in Gallery I* masks and social distancing required at all times

On view December 12, 2020 through January 2, 2021

APOSTASY: New Works by SUPER A | EXHIBITS DECEMBER 2020

Thinkspace Projects presents:

SUPER A (aka Stefan Thelen)
Apostasy

December 12, 2020 through January 2, 2021

Dutch artist Stefan Thelen, better known by his moniker Super A, creates hyperreal murals and studio paintings that explore the world of human contradiction. Through the combination of realistic and surreal imagery, Super A is often dealing in visual metaphor and social messaging, questioning the ideologies and cultural myths we’ve become too complacent at accepting without critique. Interested in the interrogation of objectivity and its ultimate exposure as a construct, Super A combines elements of realism with the free reign of fiction to produce unexpected results.

Apostasy is Thinkspace’s third solo presentation of Super A’s work. His well-established alias is a creative alter identity created to explore more contentious and difficult subject matter as a muralist in the public sphere. His most recent body of works strips cartoon, fairytale, or pop cultural archetypes of their fantasy and veneer, revealing the realistic or historical counterparts beneath them. An apt commentary on the dissimulation of popular cultural mythology, Super A deconstructs its theater.

Super A is a mystery that leans on the art doing most of the talking for Stefan Thelen, taking the viewer into a wonderland walking down a yellow brick road in which Thelen’s figurative and modern surrealist compositions are providing playful puzzles to decipher.

New Print Set from Super A coming soon

Excited to be able to offer you all this special print set from SUPER A out of the Netherlands. The original paintings were featured in our Domestication solo exhibition with him, that we curated for the Brand Library and Arts Center in Glendale, California. Excited for his return later this year with us. We’ll be sharing more details on that soon.

SUPER A
Encaged Mickey + Encaged Minnie
Edition of 150 (set)
Each print measures 20 x 30 inches / 50.8 x 76.2 cm
Fine art print(s) on 300gsm archival cotton rag paper
Signed and numbered by the artist
$350 for the set of two

Available at 9:00am pacific standard time (12:00 noon eastern time) on Friday, May 15 via our web shop.

PLEASE NOTE: There are no pre-orders of any kind. In-person pickups are not possible, all prints will ship. No special number requests. Shipping details will be shared to your PayPal account or e-mail (depending on how you pay). Please be patient as we deal with these unprecedented times. Tracking will be shared as soon as possible. Thank you.