~RETNA TAKES NEW YORK BY STORM
RETNA – at the opening of his first ever NYC solo show – last night – THURS FEB 10, 2011 – in a pop-up downtown west side New York City space – presented by ANDREW VALMORBIDA and VLADIMIR RESTOIN ROITFELD – and, yes they did BLOW everyone away – it was that great !!
it was beyond great – it was: MAGIC.
ANDY VALMORBIDA & VLADIMIR RESTOIN ROITFELD PRESENT:
RETNA: THE HALLELUJAH WORLD TOUR
FEBRUARY 10, 2011 – FEBRUARY 21, 2011
560 WASHINGTON ST – WEST SIDE, NYC
DAILY HRS: 10 AM – 6 PM
the magic started from the get-go – with a long black tunnel – entrance. it felt like a museum show already – yep. the production, the design, lighting, and concept of the show, the venue itself large with high ceilings – was that great. but this time around VLADIMIR and ANDY – had the most important element down too – the work. the work was superlative, cutting edge and well, damn well – historic.
and this is just a pop-up, dudes. better get over here this weekend – it comes down Monday Feb 21, 2011.
something about art – rhymes with fashion week !!
RETNA aka MARQUIS LEWIS is a native born and bred in Los Angeles, California in 1979. that makes him something like 32. a bonafide street artist – who came up from the streets – and made his “debut” in the mid-1990s – he has “participated in over 30 international exhibits” with “countless works in the public realm” – i.e. on the streets.
“An integral fixture in the Los Angeles art scene – since an early age the transcendent nature of RETNA’S work has allowed him to seamlessly transverse from the unregulated urban landscape to institutional galleries across the globe.”
this is his first – debut – solo show in New York City.
(L) PM TENORE with RCHARD SACHS.
PM TENOT RE is credited with being acutrator int he shows ppaperwork – but whn presed – he diad no he “only brought them altogther’. good job from the man who does such a brillant job g for RVCA !!
the man himself – young curator VLADIMIR RESTOIN ROITFELD – with clothing designer STACEY BENDET.
VLADMIR has an eye for detail and design, that’s for sure. even the typography on the painting title cards – is ace.
RETNA, Los Ninos De La Calle, 2011. 96 x 72 in., mixed media.
this piece of RETNA’S stood out, pun intended !! – as it was one the few, maybe the only – that was multi-dimensional. it’s image elements raised from the canvas in a shallow relief, as well as painted.
RETNA. Midnight Stalker (dipych), 2010. 72 X 120 in., oil & enamel on canvas.
hand-wrought calligraphy and ‘code’.
most were flatly painted . . . which is not to say they didn’t have their contrasts !!
the art of the muted color contrasts: silver on white. white on gray. gray on white. white on white. black on white. shiny on matte.
that’s about the sum of what’s interesting us all – at the moment. esp. calligraphy.
also making the scene – on the left: PATRICK GRIFFIN – one of the best of the best of the local underground NYC scene.
don’t believe me ?
check out: PATRICK GRIFFIN
GREG LaMARCHE with his wife MIKEALA.
Greg LaMarche is also a big fave of mine – as well as alot of other people’s – for his own brand of ‘tagging’ and ‘block’ calligraphy – which although very stylized and visually compelling – both from a design and ‘fine art’ point of view – is very very different from Retna’s take.
MIKAELA – told me Greg has shows coming up in TORONTO and BOSTON.
you might know him better as S.P.ONE back in the day.
check out: GREG LaMARCHE
a wild new addition to the scene: COLIN T. McELROY – just 4 months into life in the East Village – from San Francisco. the West Coast. and yes, he says he misses surfing and can’t believe the snow – but is digging life in the big apple. and was here with a nice video camera.
COLIN told us L.A. based RETNA works with 2 West Coast crews – MSK and AWR. MAD SOCIETY KINGS and ANGELS WILL RISE. sometimes when they all work together – its MSKAWR – and they add the 7th letter – G (for God).
something about COLIN – speaks out – VOLCOM !! his dad designed their famous rock . . . logo.
check out: VOLCOMICS RELEASE PARTY/FUSE GALLERY/MAY 19, 2007 – scroll down – YOUNG CELEBS !!
even – the signage was great. like I said at the top: looked more like a museum show – than a pop-up.
if this is the way things are going – get in, and get out, make a big impression . . . and spread some lasting magic.
I would say – things are definitely heating up.
PHOTOS COPYRIGHT: NANCY SMITH