Artist: Joshua Vasquez
Exhibition: Vida/ Morte
Media: Black spray paint, rosin paper,trash bags, sharpies, wood panels, flowers, canvas
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Gatov Gallery West
I recently had the honor of meeting Joshua Vasquez, who is an undergraduate student at California State University of Long Beach. He is currently enrolled in the School of Art in the BFA Painting and Drawing Program. Joshua is from downtown Los Angeles and explained how he has loved art since he was young and has painted sine he was a child. Even though, he has been doing art projects for most of his life, he didn’t start getting serious about art till about 2 years ago. I was fortunate enough to view his solo gallery, which was featured at CSULB. His gallery was filled with an array of art work, which were beyond captivating.
His work explores the ideas of life and death but is truly inspired by the differences between the two concepts. When asked if anything specific motivated him to create this gallery he simply responded “no”.The majority of his pieces in Vida/ Morte consisted of black and white jagged lines. Many of lines went in a circular motion and some were shaded so the there would be more contrasts in the black and white combination. Contrary to all the black and white, there was a floor piece with flowers which had very colorful petals. Each line looked effortless, but when looking at each complete piece, one could notice deep thought was put into the placement of everything.
Joshua told me how he used wood panels and canvas as a basis for a lot of his pieces. Plus, he used spray paint and sharpies to make most of the black color. Furthermore, I personally found it most fascinating that he stretched out trash bags to symbolize the transparency between life and death and show his work through another perspective. He also used red rosin paper, black paint and countless dried flowers. I admired how he used a variety of supplies, and I believe by doing so his work was more appealing and unique.
Personally I really enjoyed his art gallery, as each piece was thought provoking. None of his art was very similar but each piece was able to compliment the other very well. I thought his gallery was cohesive and had many underlying symbolisms of life. One example I conversed with some other classmates about was that none of the lines in his work were perfect, as nothing in life is perfect. Plus, each piece of art balanced another piece of art and they were all similar in at least one way. I believe this is similar to people, as everyone is connected some how and each individual may be connected but still balances the world out in their own way. I found these underlying symbolisms to relate to my personal beliefs on life.
Overall, I genuinely appreciated the gallery and could tell Joshua put a lot of hard work into it. He definitely was to the point and seemed to be a great, deep and intelligent man. Joshua created a beautiful exhibit, and think he only will create better in the future years to come.