Artist: Josh Vasquez
Media: Oils, Sculpting, Drawing
Gallery: CSULB school of art, Gatov Gallery East
Josh Vasquez is an abstract artist who studied in Belmont High School in Los Angeles and has loved art since as long as he can remember, since then he has came a long way. He will be graduating at the end of this semester from Cal State Long Beach from the BFA program, and also is planing to join the MFA program once he is finished. He is not a graph artist and he made that very clear, there is a big difference from his work and graffiti and that isn’t what he wants his work to resemble. He had each piece of his work named, even if the project consisted of three individual parts. Every part had a unique label which showed how valuable it was to him and you can see that right away when he begins talking about them.
Josh’s art ranges from working with paints, sketches and sculptures. However, his main focus is in oils. Right now his style has a relaxing feel to it, he uses cool tone colors that resemble a sunset you would find in Los Angeles. Its a style that he recently discovered and has not always used. Apart from that, he lays the pigments on the canvas almost in a rippled pattern, which gives it a certain texture and appearance. The art he displayed in the gallery were all done during the same time, which is why they all bounce off one another. The series took him nearly two and a half months to complete and complement each other nicely.
Chris Burden, Noah Davis and Mark Rasco are the top three favorite artists that Josh is inspired by. Each artist has their individual style that reflects in his work. For instance, he described one of the artists styles as intense and bold. He doesn’t use their ideas and he doesn’t piggy back off their work, he simply is encouraged by all three, uses their main focal point and incorporates them into one piece. Other than art, Josh writes poetry and listens to music on the side. The quote “I love the way you fall asleep” is from part of his poem that he used in his work for the very first time. I asked what the meaning was and he was hesitant on replying to the question. When he did answer, he stated that he doesn’t want people to look at his art and see what he sees, or see what the message was that he was trying to get across. He wants people to interpret it however they feel, to make his art meaningful to them and to have it connect to whoever the audience may be on a more personal level.
As far as joshs personal responses went, I felt we had a few ideas in common. The main reason the artist is here in Long Beach was because Los Angeles was all to familiar, even though he chose this new place to live and start a new chapter in his life, his work reflects his home town. Which reminded me a lot of when it was time for me to decide on where to go to school, Long beach wasn’t too far yet it was far enough for me to do my own thing. The entire interview I was amazed at how the art was so valuable to the artist himself. Yet it was open for interpretation! I know if that were my work I would have a specific answer as to what this piece meant to me and why I made it. However, this wasn’t the case and it definitely wasn’t my work. So the fact that, he allows something so special to him be something special to someone else is amazing and I really enjoyed hearing what he had to say.