week 11 – Artist Interview – Gerardo Pena & Kyle Kruse

On Thursday, 4/9/2015, I got the opportunity to experience Pena and Kruse’s art gallery. Both are pursuing their bachelors in Fine Art. They did a joint project that I really liked. The idea of collaborating with someone and creating a product together seemed to bring out the best in their art. After jotting down some typical facts about them, i got the opportunity to talk with just them and a couple other classmates.

IMG_0539We spoke a little bit about art, obviously. But it was that cliche statement of “I don’t get art” that always manages to come up. Of course, there’s going to be people that do not get the perspective factor involved in art. I like to think that I had a mindset similar  to that before coming into the class. They mentioned that they had a great response to people that have that type of reaction towards it.

They said something along the lines of well, you may not understand art, but you’re still on instagram, everything that you’re wearing, from your sweater all the way down to your Nike shoes is art. I could not agree more with the way they put this. Our style and what we wear is a form of art also. We borrow from all these different brands when we put on clothes and come up with our style. We express ourselves through the clothes we wear. This dives right back into their style of art, which has an urban, streetwear, hiphop feel to it, something i’m familiar with.

Both Pena and Kruse started off with tagging and graffiti art. This art goes hand in hand with urban plus streetwear. After having that conversation it had to be pointed out that we were all wearing similar clothing, but we all had our own way of rocking it. There style and translation that is made onto the paper has that feel, something that is modern and easily understood.

“Gerardo Pena and Kyle Kruse’s Captains of Industry feature painting and printmaking commenting on the construction and deconstruction of the industrial complex in urban areas.” – COTA DepartmentIMG_0538

Pena and Kruse described their physical exhibit as a picture frame. Once you step into the exhibit, you’re entering a new environment, you’re entering a picture and being immersed in it. I love that perspective that they gave me. Doing a quick walk through of all the exhibits, I really felt connected with their exhibit, it gave me the right vibe and pushed me to talking with them.

I want to describe their exhibit as gritty, which is something that I really like, something that isn’t simple, its full of life, it’s complex and it’s vibe just kind of hit home for me.  It really felt like i was walking into a streetwear store, like the ones that will pop up on Melrose St. in downtown LA, but without that hipster elitist vibe you can get from the employees at times. One detail that contributed to that street theme was the crumpled up newspaper that was placed on the floor, something like that was able to help add to the effect that the artists were trying to get.

The two artists, both of which are about to graduate this spring, spoke about shading and lining, it’s like sculpting on paper.

IMG_0540While they were talking to us, they had a couple art pieces that they were working on. For them, this was their assignment when i asked about it, no other reason that they had it right in front of them. They’re time lapse drawings, where they would draw an image, then erase the lines and draw it again, and they would do this continuously until a full time lapse image was created. it is also known as ghosting.


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