Media:ink markers, plastic trash bags, paper mounted on wood panels, and red rosin paper
Gallery:CSULB School of Art, Gatov Gallery West
About the Artist:
Josh Vasquez is an undergraduate here at CSULB and is working on a BFA for painting and drawing. This was his non degree solo show. He is from downtown Los Angeles and has had art in his life for “basically forever” as he puts it. However, he became much more serious about his art around two years ago and is due to graduate next Spring. His work mainly explores life and death and the many differences amongst the two.
The media in this exhibition was really interesting to me. I loved how Josh incorporated clear trash bags by using marker on them in his art work. Trash is something most people see as ugly and he found a way to make it into art. I think that’s pretty cool. I also liked how it was mostly black, white, and gray with minimal color. He also used red rosin paper, ink markers, and paper mounted onto wood panels.
It is very apparent how Josh’s art ties into life and death just by looking at it. However, I thought it was very interesting that the titles were in Spanish.Vincent Van Gogh and Frida Khalo inspired Josh’s work and I believe you can see that in some of the lines and style of his drawings. Josh even went as far to say that even his own art goes through a life and death cycle, it has some sort of life span. “The ink and paint will not survive as long as the plastic it is drawn on. And the flowers will not last as long as the paper beneath them.” I took this to mean as long as his artwork is complete and available to look at, then it’s alive. When pieces start to be taken away, like the paper underneath the flowers, the art dies. I thought this was an interesting quote to kind of tie together all of his work.
I really liked the simplicity of his art. There was detail, but not too much. The pieces with skulls and spirit looking figures obviously related to death, but the roses were a beautiful connection to life. I’d have to say the rose piece was hands down my favorite.I liked how the roses were related to life, but they looked very delicate at the same time, as if they were barely hanging on. I also really liked how the lines in the skulls and figures were really fluid. This exhibit was very easily relatable to me. Usually when I look at artwork I’m very confused and when I looked at Josh’s art it seemed very clear the message he was trying to get across.