Artist: Joshua Vasquez
Exhibition: Vida Morte
Media: Painting, Drawing
Gallery: Cal-State Long Beach SOA, Gatov West
Joshua Vasquez is an artist from downtown Los Angeles who is expected to graduate with his BFA in Painting and Drawing next spring. His exhibit “Vida Morte” was one of the few I got to see at the SOA galleries. His interests include painting and creating art. When looking at the title of his work “Vida Morte” it is easy to conclude that Vasquez’s work explores the ideas of life and death.
Vasquez’s pieces consist of mostly paintings that have one transparent image with a smaller image behind it. His paintings create an eerie feeling when looking at them, which I am sure was intentional in order to stick with his theme. The images on these paintings seemed very passionate as if while creating them Vasquez was overwhelmed with emotion. However, it was not the paintings that caught my eye, but the display that was laid out right in the middle of the exhibit. This display was a large black roll of paper with several different flowers laid out on it. What caught my attention about this piece was the fact that all the flowers were wilted and dried out.
These works of art can clearly display ideas Vasquez was exploring through his creative process. His paintings create an eerie feeling when looking at them, which I am sure was intentional in order to stick with his theme. The center display, in my opinion, really made it easier to notice the life and death theme that Vasquez had for his exhibit. His work represents death by seeming dark and spooky at first glance, but when looking at it closely I felt a great amount of emotion and passion went into these works which I saw as the “life” aspect of his theme being represented.
Overall, I felt that the exhibit theme was both thought-provoking and clear. When staring at the paintings both eerie and passionate emotions came over me. And the colors used were both light/colorful and black. These different factors play perfectly into the ideas that Vasquez explores and are clearly represented through his work. I enjoyed Vasquez’s exhibit because he conveys a topic that is so simple yet so serious. In many ways, a paradox.