Comic Relief x Interview with Hydro74

Earlier this month, before the opening of “Rednecks & Aztecs“, we interviewed the artists to get information on the show. Below are Hydro74’s answers- although unhelpful, they are by far the most comical replies we’ve gotten and certainly pay tribute to his character so we thought we’d share. Plus, it’d be selfish to keep these gems to ourselves. Mervin by Hydro74
Please describe your pieces that will be in the show/what mediums are they?

A bunch of things to create the illusion I’m a artist that was inspired by something I saw while eating pork and beans and drowning my sorrows in cheap whiskey. Some ink on paper, some other types of ink on paper and some paper on on glue.

What’s the significance of the

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title and how does it tie into your work?

Significance? I’m a redneck, he’s a Aztec… Best I could come up with considering I was drinking moonshine at 3am. How it ties in, well, hopefully it doesn’t otherwise it might have looked like this was planned! Read More »

Christopher De Leon x Studio Visit for “STREET DREAMS”

We met up with Chris last week in his local studio space to get some shots of his upcoming pieces in our next show “Street Dreams” opening February 15th. Check them out below:
Studio Visit with Christopher De LeonStudio Visit with Christopher De Leon Read More »

Interview x MADC x Over The Edge!

fifteen forty-one by MadCWhat was your introduction to graffiti and what were your thoughts when you picked up your first can?

I was given a book (“Graffiti Art Germany”) on graffiti by a friend. I read it in one night and was absolutely fascinated by the art, the possibilities and the community behind it. I wanted to be a part of that and paint big walls myself. I was pretty disappointed about the outcome of my first piece though. Handling a spray can was much more difficult than I thought.

How do you come up with ideas when doing a wall?

No idea really. I have ideas in my head at all times. Sometimes I just pick any kind of colours, go to the wall and paint without any plan. Other times I have a clear vision of how the wall should look like. Then I make some rough black and white sketches, choose the colours carefully and try to work by the plan as exact as possible. Read More »

Interview with Artist and Curator Leon Loucheur of “Reckoning”!

Since we’re rounding the final stretch of “Reckoning“- the surrealistic show that took over the walls of 1AM this month, we sat down with curator and artist Leon Loucheur to get the background scoop. Believe me, you’ll want to read through to the end! "Don't Let It Bring You Down" by Leon Loucheur

As curator, where did the concept behind “Reckoning” come from?

The truth is that it was a bit of a collaborative effort between myself, Robert Bowen and Optimist. We were the only three artists on the show at the time. My role was really fostering the conversation and brokering a concept that would inspire good work. The idea was to come up with something specific and relevant to what was going on in the world, but without suffocating the freedom and creativity of the artists.  We didn’t want to get bogged down with the show being a commentary about one specific thing. In the end, we all agreed that Reckoning was contemporary, reflecting the whole 2012 vibe, but offered a lot of room for interpretation.

Frank Kozik x Exclusive Interview x IPaintMyMind!

Find out more behind the icon Frank Kozik; artist and inspiration for our upcoming tribute show “KOZIK“. Check out the killer artist line-up and meet the man November 2nd, 6:30-9:30pm! Photo Credit: IPaintMyMind.com.
“A cursory glance at the rock poster art scene over the past 20 years would yield a handful of names… and those names would pass the credit right along to Frank.” – Evan La Ruffa.
Read the rest of the interview at IPaintMyMind.com.

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: Monty Guy

This year, fresh artist Monty Guy has finally pursued his art career by kicking off with exhibitions at Wonderland SF, Modern Eden, Fabric 8, and a couple one night shows at Minna Gallery. His concept for tattooed children is to emulate someone’s inner child as a bad ass. Monty brazenly says “I don’t have the balls to tattoo my face in actual life, so I paint myself as a gangster child with the tattoos I’m too much a sissy to get done. And I also like the juxtaposition of the innocence of a child with the hardcore nature of tattoos.” "Hemingway" by Monty Guy "City Slicka" by Monty Guy “Sergeant Schulz is based off of a drunken sailor friend of mine who has a huge personality and loves scotch (he has the word tattooed on the inside of his lip). City Slicka is based off of a friend that is a Mission native, loves the Giants, fighting, and drinking, and has the words “city slicka” tattooed on his forearms.” Monty has only been painting with acrylic on birch for about two or three months, with around 12 pieces to date. The Van Gogh and Hemingway paintings are the first two of a series he plans on doing to pay homage to influential artists with the same mindset of being a hard ass child.

Reckoning” will be showing until October 27th.

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: Pemex

“In the world of graffiti and massive urban murals, Pemex is a hard name to overlook. He’s paid plenty of dues getting his hands dirty and raised through the ranks to be one of the most renowned urban artists putting in work up and down California. Born and raised in South Central Los Angeles, Pemex was able to do what few others were- to process his experience and channel it with strength and resilience into an art career.”"Death" by Pemex Read More »

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: Robert Bowen

One of my favorite bio intro paragraphs: “The bastard son of 1000 maniacs, Robert Bowen is a San Francisco based artist who watched entirely too much t.v. as a kid. A connoisseur of bad habits and collector of all things wrong, this “artist” feels it is his duty to bombard you with whatever inane and juvenile imagery falls from his hand. Hell bent on world domination, he pauses only occasionally for Mexican food and Lindsay Lohan movies.” Art by Robert Bowen "Lucky Strike 11 - The Sky Is Falling" by Robert Bowen “Bowen takes familiar iconography and handily corkscrews it with his own unique brand of humor and distinct painting style. Bowen’s ability to reappropriate contradictory symbols into unsettling situations puts him in league with greats like Ron English, and Andy Warhol. He continues to walk the line between charming humor and blasphemous sarcasm with symbolic imagery that leaves the viewer both curious and confused.” -Stacey Ransom

See Bowen’s work in person at the gallery in our current show “Reckoning“.
Reckoning” will be running until October 27th.

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: Optimist

Optimist is the consummate Bay Area art assassin. From his effortless hand styles to his highly rendered acrylic paintings, he aims to kill and doesn’t miss. Throughout his years of traveling the world writing graffiti, Optimist has developed the keen eye of an observer, taking in his ever-new environments, processing and interpreting their symbols, and reorganizing them into the language of his own personal experience.”"Tomorrow Is A Long Time" by Optimist "With God On Our Side" by Optimist
“His work for “Reckoning” was painted using reference photos he took during his travels. They represent the tension between the natural animal world and an advancing army of machines, the march of destruction and materialism that overcomes nature and the local regionalism of the world. Still, he provides a beacon of optimism, anchoring his images

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with a central, positive symbol. It’s the balancing act at the heart of one of the Bay Area’s best.” – Leon Loucheur

To see Optimist’s work in person, come down to the gallery!
Reckoning” runs until October 27th.

Behind Show-Stopper “Herukas” by Sam Rodriguez

At the top of the SF Chronicle article featuring The Composite Knowledge was “Herukas”- the mighty four-paneled portrait painting by Sam Rodriguez. Not your typical portrait; Sam chose to split the woman’s face into four sections with the entire right side being a mythical representation. Many gallery visitors have been stunned by “Herukas”, peaking their curiosity and causing us to investigate the inspiration behind the work:
"Herukas" by Sam Rodriguez Read More »