Updated: Nov 9, 2020
Curated by Thinkspace Projects
On View Virtually: November 9, 2020 - January 8, 2021
Brand Library & Art Center and Thinkspace Projects are pleased to present Nexus III, showcasing a curated selection of international artists belonging to the New Contemporary Art Movement. This special exhibition will include mini solo shows from Yosuke Ueno, The Perez Bros, Amy Sol, Leon Keer, Reen Barrera and Uriginal (a.k.a. Uri Martinez.)
The New Contemporary Art Movement is known for an emphasis on figuration, representational genres, and narrative in the wake of art academe’s conceptual turn in the 90’s. The movement is shaped by a foundational counter cultural edge, public activations, and its social impetus. Largely self-supported and community-driven, the movement has taken shape beyond gallery walls and outside of traditional institutional vetting. Now, as diverse and heterogeneous aesthetically as it is geographically and culturally expansive, the New Contemporary has come into its own as a globally energized art movement.
Photos and videos courtesy of @Birdmanphotos
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YOSUKE UENO - Majestic Parade
A self-taught painter based out of Tokyo, Yosuke Ueno is known for his imaginative, character-driven worlds created in symbolic pursuit of innocence, hope, and positivity. These loosely narrative-based paintings evolve intuitively, the artist’s approach to his compositions seldom premeditated, preferring instead to embrace the creative tangents of his subconscious. By allowing the process of painting to dictate the outcome, the works host a recurring cast of playful creatures, hybrids, and psychotropic fantasies. The artist, amidst these playful gestures, emerges as an inventor of psychedelic metaphor and cultural pastiche, freely combining references to everything from Japanese culture, ancient Greek mythology, Tokyo Street fashion and video games to Disney animation and the Western canon of art history. Driven by a genuine desire to capture our philosophical interconnectivity through art, Ueno’s multicultural references coalesce through the unpretentious spontaneity of his imagination and a fundamental belief in the universality of a shared condition.
THE PEREZ BROS - More Bounce
The Perez Bros are identical twin brothers Alejandro and Vicente from South Gate, CA. After graduating from South East High School, they attended Otis College of Art and Design to pursue a degree in Fine Art focusing on painting, where they began working as a collaborative duo. The Perez Bros were exposed to the car culture in Los Angeles at a very young age. Their father has been a part of a lowrider car club for as long as they can remember. They are fascinated with the culture, from the cars to the models, to the people and the music. Through their paintings, they try to capture certain moments that they see when they attend car shows. Larger paintings seem to capture the mood and feeling of these car events, while smaller paintings tend to capture more intimate moments. Through their paintings, they hope to make the viewer feel as if they were attending a car show.
AMY SOL - Forest Dreams
Amy Sol’s poetically measured images retain traces of melancholic pause in spite of their idyllic beauty and calm, feeling at times like the magic of fairytale tempered by the ambivalence of the adult. Personal and simultaneously universal, the powerful quiet of her works forces a reflective distance into an otherwise unmanageably chaotic visual world. Sol’s graphic and illustrative inspirations are drawn from enduring collective influences from animation to decorative design, Japanese manga and the whimsy of Ghibli films, as well as the idyllic natural worlds of classic-era Disney and the Golden Age of turn-of-the-century American Illustration. Sol’s works often feature a female protagonist in collusion with supporting animal or creature characters, a tradition of friendship long spun in popular culture.
REEN BARRERA - Dull Maker
Born in Paris, France, Reen Barrera considered himself a “toy deprived kid” only owning a small handful of beloved action figures. To fight his boredom and explore his creative side, he started to make his own toys using found objects, not knowing he was already on the road to becoming an artist. The artist adds…. "There is this idiom that says “It’s written all over your face” … It is where I find the inspiration to literally remember those facial expressions, create an artwork out of it, and mix it up with different symbols and patterns… Acrylic, oil, and aerosol paint are my choice of medium in painting, a lot of times I often let accidents like drips smudges and splatter help me to decipher on what to do, I do start with a very loose abstract figures to overcome the fear of an empty canvas staring at me. In this collection of work, I try to become personal as possible,… to depict some of my experiences that leads me to where I am right now as an artist”.
URIGINAL (aka URI MARTINEZ) - Sweet Rage
Since the beginning of the new millennium, the street art scene in Barcelona, Spain has become one of the most vibrant in Europe. Barcelona artist, Uriginal is known for his pieces inspired by historical masterpieces and popular imagery. He brings to life the famous subjects of iconic paintings by utilizing bright colors and bold lines, along with the use of a kaleidoscope geometric pattern throughout many of his artworks. Influenced by the distinctive style of Spanish architect Antoni Gaudí - especially his multicolored mosaics - Uriginal has developed a unique aesthetics and style that ranges from the reinvention of Marvel Comics heroes and Pop Art to traditional Spanish painting, Flamenco and the Barcelona Graffiti scene. His characters are tessellated mosaics, seemingly in constant alteration, as if they were appearing or disappearing. The vivid color, humor, and irrepressible creativity, are all part of Uriginal’s alluring visual language.
LEON KEER - Contradictions
Leon Keer is a world recognized leading artist in anamorphic street art. He has executed commissions in Europe, The United States, Mexico, The United Arabic Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Russia, New Zealand, Australia and several Asian countries. His paintings reflect his thoughts on current issues, such as environmental concerns and the livability of this world. Keer works in contrasts, confronting the viewer with the diseased spirit of our times, visible decay counter-pointing a timeless longing for unspoiled beauty and playfulness. The artist adds: "Every street art piece is unique and belongs to the street and its residents, the temporary fact about this art form strengthens its existence”.
Founded in 2005, Thinkspace has garnered an international reputation as one of the most active and productive exponents of the New Contemporary Art Movement. 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 Culver City gallery is now home to emerging, mid-career and established artists that span the globe.
ABOUT BRAND LIBRARY & ART CENTER
Brand Library & Art Center has been a cornerstone for the arts in Southern California since 1956. The unique public library houses over 110,000 items on the visual arts and music, overseen by subject-specialist librarians. Free gallery exhibitions, concerts, lectures, dance performances, films, and hands-on craft programs are offered for children and adults. Always evolving, Brand Library utilizes new technologies and continues to develop innovative programs to serve an ever-widening public interested in the arts. Brand Library & Art Center is a branch of the City of Glendale Library, Arts & Culture Department.