REYES AWR MSK interview in Acclaim Magazine

July 27 2012 . 05:31pm

Read interview at: acclaimmag.com / Find out more at: Reyes78.com

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Zes on His Journey From Graffiti to the Gallery| LA WEEKLY

May 02 2012 . 09:10am

 

 

By Shelley Leopold

Zes, aka Zeser, aka Zes AWR/MSK, is a Los Angeles graffiti artist with a feral stare that you might only notice in serial killers or creative geniuses. He’s been one of L.A.’s most prolific taggers for many years. If you look up every now and again, you may have noticed his burners in back alleys or on the ledges of buildings in Echo Park, but until very recently, you wouldn’t see his work in a gallery. And, if he had had his way, you weren’t going to.

It took many years of battling the obsessive-compulsive need to fit his name onto inaccessible surfaces (tops of buildings, viaducts, or retaining walls) and the inner demons that go along with that mindset for Zes the graffiti artist to become Zes the gallery artist. Recently, he has been proving to contemporary art audiences that he’s got chops to hang out inside, and to our surprise, he’s looking forward to doing more. “There were other things going on in my life, besides me focusing in on my art and my talent,” explains Zes. “Now I’ve put aside all those other things that were going on and I feel like good things are coming.”

Currently at Morgan Spurlock’s “New Blood” Show at Thinkspace, Zes is showing work alongside that of another of the distinguished AWR/MSK graffiti crew, artist/activist Saber. Saber chose Zes as his “protégé” for the show in keeping with its mentor-protégé theme. “Zes has one of the most unique and aggressive styles out there,” says Saber. “He has been one of my favorite painters for many years now. On the street Zes has pushed boundaries and limits that will never be matched. His abstract canvas work is beautiful.”

Zes, who still prefers not to reveal his face or his real name, made his art gallery debut in February at Known Gallery on Fairfax, the gleaming white cube of a space that showcases up and coming talent, usually alongside already established artists. Zes’ “Excavated Revelations” shared the bill with Retna, a current art world superstar who debuted some new lithographs — pensive work that is much smaller in scale and detail than his usual murals. Zes credits Retna as an early influence, which may explain their similarly textured styles. “I think when it comes to influence, we grew up as part of the same crew, LTS,” says Zes of L.A.’s Toughest Sport writers, another crew he’s affiliated with. “If you go back in history, if you follow LTS style, you’ll see a lot of that.”

Working with ink rollers of various size, acrylics and even buff paint ( “Palomino Beige,” the color most popular with graffiti cleanup teams), the new Zes work consists of beautifully spontaneous textures and color, controlled only by the uniform panels he chooses to utilize. All his wood panels are the same tall, narrow, 24″ x 60″ dimensions, which provide structure. “Even before I started doing the first painting, I just had a picture in my head for many years and I just went by it,” explains Zes about his all-vertical format. “Actually, you could hang these paintings either horizontally or vertically and they work. That’s how I was making them.

And when it comes to the colors, its really just what’s on hand for me,” Zes continues. “Each piece is its own freestyle. It’s different and interesting because I get to work with tools I haven’t worked with before.”

Zes hides letterforms (like his daughter’s name, Love) within his compositions and actually sets instinctual time limits on how long he thinks each piece should take. He has found he’s still motivated by pressure, but this time there are no cops involved. “Right now, I’m just going for it. It is what it is, like graffiti,” he explains. “In my early years I was just out to prove myself and put a name up. I did it for kids in the neighborhood that didn’t have anything else to look at but gang graffiti. To open their minds to something else.”

Thinkspace presents: “New Blood” Curated by Morgan Spurlock, on view through May 19. 6009 Washington Blvd., Culver City. 310-558-3375, www.thinkspacegallery.com

Read article at: laweekly.com

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THE HUNDREDS x THE SEVENTH LETTER | SABER

March 30 2012 . 04:17am

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RIME MSK in Mexico for New Years

December 12 2011 . 06:09pm

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US VERSUS THEM – OIL & WATER | November 12th, 2011

November 05 2011 . 05:17pm

US VERSUS THEM
in conjunction with
Known Gallery, City Fog Surf, Biltwell, Chop Cult, Lowbrow Customs and Dice Magazine
Present
OIL & WATER

A group show of new works and art.

KNOWN GALLERY
441 North Fairfax Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90036
310-860-6263

Public opening:
November 12th, 2011 | 8-11pm

Traditionally oil and water do not mix. The surf, hot rod and motorcycle cultures that grew out of Southern California from the 50’s -70’s however, were all connected by the idea of personal freedom and expression- not conforming to the standards of the societies they existed in.  For this show we are bringing together dozens of artists and craftsmen from these respective backgrounds and beyond- from legends to rookies.  Each artist will be provided with a particular canvas: a blank board from City Fog Surfboards, helmets from Biltwell, gas tanks from Lowbrow Customs among other items.

To kick off the event a run is being organized for that day that will end at the gallery on Fairfax.  On hand there will be a live performance by ex-TSOL singer Joe Woods, as well as live installations and pinstriping.

To coincide with the show, Us Versus Them will be creating a pop up shop that will occupy the back room at Known Gallery. In addition to UVT Fall product and accessories, exclusive artist prints and tees based around some of the pieces included in the show will be for sale. PBR is providing beverages, and UVT will also be creating a custom ale brewed specifically for the event.

Find out more at:

OILANDWATERARTSHOW.com
USVERSUSTHEM.com

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