In this week’s classmate conversation I interviewed both Devin Nelson and Anthony Simeone. Devin is in his 3rd year here at California State University, Long Beach and so is Anthony. We all seemed to have one thing in common. All three of us love to play sports and do anything outside including snowboarding, hiking, mountain biking, wakeboarding and camping. Devin’s favorite color is red, and his favorite house pet is a dog. His favorite exotic animal is quite strange as it is a Lion and Panther mixed breed. I never heard of a hybrid like this, the only one that I knew of was a Liger. I have to say, when I looked up a picture of the hybrid, I was amazed. When I asked Anthony what kind of art has impacted him the most, he responded with music because it is in his everyday life all around him and that is what gets to him and makes him happy. Devin responded with Urban art such as graffiti because he grew up in Long beach that is what he saw the most. Anthony is studying the same thing as me which is Mechanical Engineering and Devin is a double business major. Anthony would like to work in the amusement industry and Devin would one day hope to be running the Port of Long Beach. Devin’s favorite memory from a sport was in pop warner football he ran a punt back for a touchdown running sideline to sideline weaving through the opposing team in his white soccer cleats. Anthony’s favorite memory was recently when he had just joined the Rugby team and the first time he got the ball he ran over two players and scored a 50 yard try. It was awesome getting to talk to the two and I wish them well in the future.
In this week’s artist conversation I was able to view artist, Jennifer Oh’s pieces. The pieces were very interesting and obviously they meant something to her almost like it was personal. The name of her piece in the gallery was “Diverted”. Jennifer seems to be very passionate about the problem with women being sold off into sexual slavery in Korea. She says that women and girls were forced into sexual slavery from Korea to the Japanese Imperial Army in occupied territories during the Sino-Japanese war. Many women were forced out of their homes during the war into wartime brothels and some were often lured into the brothels with the promise of work.
After being lured into the brothels, Jennifer claims these women were incarcerated into comfort stations servicing up to 30 men in one day. The name “comfort women” comes from the translation of Japanese euphemism meaning “prostitutes”. Jennifer’s work includes photos of these women where you can see them expressing emotions of remorse and sadness. She wanted to create a symbolic connection between these women and herself, so she threaded onto the images. The threading and images are her reactions to the past and the present stories told by these women who survived these wretched conditions.
Jennifer explains that the combined media gives the effect of a dimension where history and future converge. I’m not sure what she means by that phrase, if she is claiming that this hasn’t changed at all or what. I know that these kind of things are still happening all around but I don’t think it is still a big problem. So how will the past dimension and future dimension converge? This is when I wish Jennifer was available to talk to today because her piece is very interesting. The threading she applied to the photographs are supposed to give the piece a more personal and present appeal because it skews the way you see the image. The threading reveals thoughts and feelings of the bodies and displays a duality of the bodies. She ends this with that she is recasting the figure with an uncomfortable modesty, overlaying a past generations cross-cultural anxieties with an allusion to our own.
With that being said, I know understand what she meant by saying she is converging a past dimension with a future one. She accomplished this with the threading. I decided to write about her piece instead of the other artists’ whop were available because her piece spoke to me because I felt how personal it was to her and that it meant something. She threaded tears onto these women and clothes along with other displays of emotion. It was amazing what Jennifer did with these photographs. Almost like the threading belonged. It was great having the opportunity to write about Jennifer’s work and I wish I could’ve met her but you can definitely find out all that you want by clicking the link to her website above.
This week I was able to meet a great CSULB artist, Tyler Turett. Tyler is currently in his last semester here in which he will be receiving his bachelor’s degree in Animation. Tyler has big dreams and some big shoes to fill with his degree. I say this because his dream job is to work for pixar, because he said the first time he saw Toy Story he was amazed. Since then, he has always been interested in animation and wanted to make things like Toy Story
Over the years, Tyler has had many people inspire him but he can’t quite pick one individual. Each drawing takes quite a while for Tyler to make because he starts off with a bunch of character designs and tries out different shapes and sizes. He then makes about twenty rough sketches until he likes one. HE said his process is tough but in summary he draws the character once and then make a bunch of mouths for them because a lot of his characters use dialogue. He tries to do something different each time and entertain his audience. He makes an actual skeleton with his characters with joints and stuff and then moves them around. He actually hardly uses paper at all anymore.
One of Tyler’s favorite scenes on his drawings is the one with the carrots. He says that in the scene a man is shown cutting carrots very well and his friends are actually amazed by how well he’s doing it. The next scene is a flashback of giant carrots beating him up. His favorite characters are the basketball devil character, and the tall skinny frog looking guy. He is always making new characters so he can’t pick a favorite. Tyler is now in his last semester and is lined up for an internship in Portland for an animation company who will be making a cartoon show. He will be working for the show until they stop making it.
Tyler is a great artist and also a nice guy. His goal is to make his audience laugh at his work because of the comedy behind it, and personally I can say he achieved this goal because he is very creative and I was laughing at his scenes. I think it’s awesome that he will be making a new cartoon show and that he will be representing CSULB. I could also see some resemblance from his pieces in other Disney pieces like the devil basketball player. He looked like on of the characters from Space Jam. It was great talking to Tyler and I wish him all the best in his new internship and future in animation.
This week I had the pleasure of meeting my fellow classmate, Andrea Casamitjana who is in her 2nd year here at CSULB studying Film. She is from Madrid, Spain but living here in Long Beach with her family which includes her younger sister. She loves living in Spain and would much rather be there than here. In fact she just got offered am internship in Madrid and will be studying abroad next year back home where she can reunite with friends and family. Even though she lived in Madrid her favorite soccer team is Barcelona. While coming here full time, she also works at Magic Lamp as a hostess and in her free time away from work she likes to dance but hasn’t been able to in the last month because she pulled her hamstring which can be very painful. She also likes to travel, ski, travel, and play volleyball but claims she sucks at volleyball. When she graduates she would like to become an actress but she knows that will be a tough road. She plans on first becoming a producer and producing her own movie and from there being able to become an actress due to the connections she makes. It was very nice meeting Andrea and I wish her best of luck in her future plans to become an actress.
This week I had the opportunity to meet Artist Christopher Linquata who likes to be called Christo. Christo is in his last year at CSULB in the masters program. Before entering the masters program, Christopher was teaching art but he wanted to become a better teacher and also a better painter. A lot of his inspiration actually comes from other artists and friends in the Masters program.
A lot of time and preparation go into each one of Christo’s paintings. His largest painting took four months to make with a month and a half of preparation. For each painting Christo prefers to use acrylic paint. His paintings consist of real and mythological stories which he wants the viewer to figure out which story is real. In most of his stories the background is based off of San Pedro Beach and other local areas like Long Beach. When looking at Christo’s instagram where you can find him by his username @icon5350, I noticed he likes to use gold for his framing of paintings. Also on his instagram you can see some of the characters in the paintings actually hanging out with him in the real world.
Christo is inspired by a lot of things like the artists in the masters program and also artists from the early renaissance and street art. The artists from the early renaissance that inspire him are Pierre de la francesca and Bien benito solini. A few nights before each show, Christo spends sleepless nights preparing for the show. Finishing his paintings, and making sure everything is in tact and perfect. You could see this on his instagram where he posts pictures using the hash tag #nosleep.
When observing Christo’s paintings I tried to determine which pieces were real stories or if they were fake. It looks like whether they were real or not, they were all based on the good times that he and his friends have had. Maybe the fake ones were dreams he had that he wanted to paint. My favorite piece was the one centered in the back that was titled “Death of Christo”. Death of Christo is comical to me because it’s so real to me. All of the time you see people passed out drunk on the beach with people around them not knowing that they are there. In this painting, he is passed out and there is a family playing around him on the rock just acting like he isn’t there. Why is this the Death of Christo if he isn’t actually dead? Is it because no one notices him? No one actually cares for his well being? If he were actually dead, would anyone care? This is what I think when I look at Death of Christo and why the artist named the painting that. It was a great week at the galleries and even better getting to meet the artist behind the paintings. Christo seems to be a great artist and an even better teacher and I wish him the best in his future endeavors.
In this week’s classmate conversation I had the opportunity to meet fellow classmate Tommy Lyons. Tommy is from lakewood and his family has always lived in Lakewood. He attended Lakewood high school and played baseball all 4 years there. He is currently is his second year here at CSULB and he is focusing in chemical engineering. He is not sure yet what he wants to do with chemical engineering but he hopes to find out soon. 5 years from now he hopes to be graduated and have a good job somewhere. In his free time away from studying, Tommy likes to play baseball, go hiking, and mountain climb at the rec center. His favorite baseball team is the Angels. His favorite animal is a Labrador dog, and I couldn’t blame him because they are an awesome intelligent dog. When he thinks of the color red, he often thinks back to high school because those are the colors of his Alma matter Lakewood high school.
In this week’s activity I had to get a little more involved and show off my American pride. In this week’s activity, we were to make Fiber Art to hang on a wall. You can use anything that has fiber in it which I chose to use some old T-shirts. I actually didn’t have any old T-shirts of my own because I couldn’t bring everything I have to Long Beach from my parent’s because there would be no room for it all. I ended up using my roommate’s old T-shirts because he is in this class as well. My objective was to make a Christmas stocking that looks like the American flag. I decided to make it look like an American flag because I love my country and I want to have something that shows my love for it.
I started off by cutting some shirts which were red, white, and blue. Next I had to figure out which end of the stocking I wanted the stars on. I chose to put the stars on the bottom part and have the stripes coming up towards the end of the stocking. It was kind of hard to figure out how I would do this but I just thought of using gorilla glue to bond the strips all together. In trying to bond all the strips together piece by piece I came across my first challenge. They weren’t bonding to each other and it was falling apart. At one point I felt like giving up on it. My next challenge was I then tried using q-tips dipped in glue to bond them together, but that was almost worse than before. After this I just decided to give up on the gorilla glue and I pulled out the old stapler. I stapled all of the strips together multiple times which seemed to work very well. I then connected one end to the other and I finally had something going. I finished it off by stapling the heel to the top piece. In the end, it took forever and it only turned out okay. It wasn’t great but I was able to hang it on the wall. It was a fun activity, I just wish I could be better at stuff like this.
This week, I had the opportunity to meet my fellow classmate Serina Khoury. Serina is 19 years old and is in her second year her at California State University, Long Beach. She is of Middle Eastern origin and likes to watch movies, hang out with friends, play volleyball, and go to the beach. Currently she is studying Human Development and wants to become a PA with her degree. She lives local to Long Beach in the Redondo Beach area and actually has a sister and a cousin that go to school here as well. One of her favorite animals is a dog and she actually owns a dog that she loves very much. When asked if she thought tattoos were art and if she would get one she responded that she did think they were art because it’s a way for someone to express what they love. She said she wouldn’t get a tattoo but if she had to it would be her last name. It was nice meeting Serina and I wish her well in her future endeavors.
In this week’s Artist conversation, I had the opportunity to meet artist, Kathy Yoon. Kathy is in her 3rd year at California State University, Long Beach and is 27 years old. When she was younger, Kathy always liked playing and making things out of Play-Do. It wasn’t until she was in college that she was introduced to ceramics. One person who has inspired her is artist, Tim Burton. Tim is a producer who has made movies like; The Nightmare Before Christmas, Beetle Juice, Corpse Bride, and Alice in Wonderland. I did not know who Tim was until I researched him but once I saw these movies that he produced, it all made sense. When I was in the Merlino Gallery looking at Kathy’s pieces, her pieces reminded me a lot of characters in his movies. Kathy likes to create these characters and putting her emotions and experiences into them.
Kathy wants people to relate to her pieces on a personal level, and only then will she feel accomplished in that. She uses many materials to make these pieces which include: Porcelain Clay, White Rose Paper Clay, Underglaze, and some yarn. Her whole process is pretty lengthy which involves heat treatment and forming. It actually starts off with coiling the clay and making long strips, she then forms it into shape, supports it on stilts, and lastly fires the clay in the kiln so that the clay hardens. Interestingly enough, her pieces are all hollow, and each piece takes about 2-3 weeks. Considering each piece takes 2-3 weeks and she had so many pieces on display, she worked on it for a while.
Her favorite piece in the gallery was all the way in the back corner under a little spot light because she says it’s the best representation of herself and closest to her heart. She always liked animation and art with characters which is where these characters come from. I would assume her favorite movie would be The Nightmare Before Christmas because of how closely her characters are represented to the movie. The characters also look like they are from a video game called Little Big Planet. My favorite peace was located in the center where the character was laying down face up, resembling a tired person.
Kathy’s pieces are pretty cool and accurate. Many times while I was in the gallery I heard people saying “Oh my gosh, this is so me, every day”. Kathy was able to relate her pieces and experiences with other people on a personal level. I believe her ultimate goal in “So Many Me’s” was to get on this personal level and help people connect to her characters. Her pieces connected with me because my girlfriend and I love going to Disneyland just about every week, and we both love the haunted mansion ride where characters from The Nightmare Before Christmas can be seen. So seeing these characters brought back some great memories with my girlfriend. It was really great getting to talk to Kathy and I hope she does well in her future because she is doing some great things.