Artist: Josh Vasquez
Exhibition: Vida / Morte
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Gatov Gallery West
On Gallery day I decided to visit the Gatov Gallery West exhibt where I saw interesting yet amazing work from Josh Vasquez. Josh is currently an undergraduate art major planning to graduate in Spring 2017. He grew up in Los Angeles and began to develop his love for art a young age. In his exhibit is called Vida Morte, it is evident his passion to his art and future profession by the way he incorporates only Black and White to his painting, meaning Life and Death.
Josh Vasquez artwork was mesmerizing because of how he used the theme of Life and Death and fused it it with his individual artistic talent. Some of his art consisted of plastic bags over his paintings and others had transparent plastic over other paintings. The paintings inside were the main focus, where as the outside was somewhat spray painted with minimal amount using Black and White. One of the first things I noticed when walking into the Gallery was the setting. By setting I mean the theme, atmosphere, lighting, colors, and the art the complemented it beautifully. The exhibit had very dim lighting while the painting had beams of light showcasing the artwork. His artwork consisted with many different types of lines, circles, and swirls. In addition, the different types of lines and etc. he used varied from being thick, thin, tall, and short. I remember asking him what does the swirl in one of his paintings meant and he responded with saying it reminded him of a rose. Which brings me to the next piece of artwork that captivated me. This piece will be the first thing you actually see when you walk in of you ever get to visit one of his exhibits, it’s a trail of mainly dead roses, but few are still left with life. This shows the theme of Life and Death, the roses which are mostly dead have no color whereas there are a few roses which are alive and well in vibrant colors.
In one artwork, he had a rose painted black and white which upside down resembled a skull. These pieces shows Vasquez’s view of Life and Death. He mentioned during his exhibit that it is important for him to have his mind set meditated before actually starting on any of his projects. I believe that is what sets his work and himself apart from many others. His emotions are evident throughout his work, you can actually receive the message that he is trying to portray. Or even the most beautiful part about his work, is that it seems as if it is making you wonder what is your meaning about life? Is only black and white, or does it have only bright and lovely colors, or even both?
After seeing this gallery, it made reflect back to my life and ask myself if I see life the same way that Josh does. But also his exhibit has given me a sense of light towards the meaning of life I once had before attending. Over all, I had a great time and it was a memorable experience for me because it was actually my first time ever to actually visit and observe artwork in an art exhibit. One last thing I want to mention is that Josh Vasquez was really blunt about his answers to our questions, which gives me the sense that there is no doubt in my mind that this is what he loves doing.