The Three Oarsman

Added on by Julio Labra.

I've recently been intrigued with the idea of people holding things above their heads. Three men wade through calf deep water while holding a small boat above their heads. The first man is leading the way but blinded the bow of the boat, the second man looks out from under the boat to observe the destination, and the man at the stern uses both arms to carry most of the boats weight. 

This image has become a metaphor for the journey I've made through the last year of graduate school. I've felt like I was wandering through new territory with only a small idea of where I was going. Like most artist I was searching for a direction to take my practice. Sometimes it felt like I would take the harder route (instead of getting in the boat I would rather walk and carry the thing). I've title the piece S.S. Sisyphus to recall the pointless labors of Sisyphus. Most of the time while I search for an image to create it feels like pointless nonsense, and I was glad to represent how it felt to me through this painting. Each figure is a self portrait of different perspectives I took while figuring out what to paint (a struggle that will hopefully continue till I die).

This will be making it's way into a larger piece shortly.


 

Moored

Added on by Julio Labra.

This is a study for a larger painting that I plan on starting this summer. I was inspired by the artist Ruprecht Von Kaufmann, and Paul Fenniak who made visits to the graduate program I was in. Both artist are highly imaginative and skilled at reinventing the world around them. I've been trying to stretch my legs and get better at inventing forms and narratives that are both interesting and ambiguous. I still have some ways to go, but I've been digging the process!

A long way from home

Added on by Julio Labra.

I decided to paint another portrait of my friend Dylan Weiler. He's been living out here in SoCal for the past year and missing the hell out of Michigan. I can relate because I have so much love for the Midwest. I miss the seasons, the cost of living, the calmness, and most of all my friends and family. In this regard Dylan and I are very similar. We are both explorers investigating a new environment and learning about the inhabitants. So I decided to paint him in a cosmonaut suit! I deemed it appropriate because it's not his style to be a scuba diver. Sometimes it felt like encountering an alien species! Nothing against California, but it's no place like home. 

 

Space Lumberjack, 4"x3", 2014

Fish Head

Added on by Julio Labra.

Today during work at the Museum I had the chance to sculpt an example of a bust for a children's class tomorrow. I ended up making a hybrid fish person. I haven't sculpted since undergraduate and this was a hell of a lot of fun. I think I might try another with sculpey instead of white clay. This guy dried up way to fast. Once it completely dries I want to gesso it and paint some fish patterns on it. I think I'll call him Goldey.
 

MFA Thesis Show!

Added on by Julio Labra.

This past Saturday on the day before Mother's Day I had the honor to show my work with five amazing artist. Cindy Bernhard, Zara Feeney, Zoey Frank, Kari Dunham, and Dylan Weiler. The opening was hosted by Arena 1 Gallery in Santa Monica the space was perfect for the work. I want to thank all the people that made it out to opening, a thank you to Jonathan Burke for making a purchase on one of my paintings, Bather, a huge thank you to Andrea Harris-McGee who was our champion as we installed the show, a thank you to Serena Stevens for making our names look pretty, and a warm thank you to Amber Orosco who is always in our corner at the MFA! I wish everyone a Happy Mother's Day as my peers and I move forward with a MFA in our hands! Also a very special thank you is needed for my mentor F. Scott Hess. Thank you for being an ocean of wisdom and having the patience to put up with me. I finally think I learned to finish. Thank you!

 

Photo Credit- F.Scott Hess

Photo Credit- F.Scott Hess

CIndy Bernhard Photo Credit- F.Scott Hess

CIndy Bernhard
Photo Credit- F.Scott Hess

Zara Feeney Photo Credit- F.Scott Hess

Zara Feeney
Photo Credit- F.Scott Hess

Zoey Frank Photo Credit- F.Scott Hess

Zoey Frank
Photo Credit- F.Scott Hess

Kari Dunham Photo Credit- F.Scott Hess

Kari Dunham
Photo Credit- F.Scott Hess

Dylan Weiler Photo Credit- F.Scott Hess

Dylan Weiler

Photo Credit- F.Scott Hess

Zara and Serena getting work done. Photo Credit- Andrea Harris-McGee

Zara and Serena getting work done.
Photo Credit- Andrea Harris-McGee

Dylan helping me put the final painting up! Photo Credit- Andrea Harris-McGee

Dylan helping me put the final painting up!
Photo Credit- Andrea Harris-McGee

Moving the paintings to the show in a Ryder truck Photo Credit- Andrea Harris-McGee

Moving the paintings to the show in a Ryder truck
Photo Credit- Andrea Harris-McGee