Over the past few months, I have ventured out into unknown territory: the territory of solo art shows (gaaaah!!!) Unsurprisingly, it’s been a learning experience. I initially felt overwhelmed by the prospect of creating all new works of art with no real outside direction placed upon me — Anyone with a background in graphic design will understand the comfort associated with having project constraints. But a blank page (or really, 15 blank pages), 3 months, and no requirements for media type, dimensions, or theme? Terrifying.
Luckily, I am a list-maker, which means I had a plethora of concepts to choose from, some of which had been stewing in my brain for years. I narrowed it down to two possibilities and eventually settled on the one that I thought was realistically doable in the amount of time I had available. The result is Animals for People.
In a nutshell, the concept for Animals for People is relatively simple: animals, doing people things. But (and forgive me for getting all art-school-critiquey for a moment), for me the concept is slightly deeper than that. Yes, I wanted to draw animals in clothing, but I also wanted to allude to our human feelings of discomfort, inadequacy, and feeling troubled by what is expected of us. I think we can relate to the beaver who knows it’s in his nature to cut down the tree, but feels ashamed by his own destruction. We can relate to the hippopotamus who feels the pressure to “be fit” and reluctantly laces up his sneakers, despite a body type less suited for running.
Throughout, I struggled with balancing imagery of cute furry creatures with more serious topics. And now that the pieces are complete, there are perhaps changes I would have made here and there. But my hope is that in the end, the work reflects life: fun, playful, and humorous with just the tiiiiiiniest inkling of sadness hidden beneath.
Animals for People: A Solo Art Show by fuzzy grapefruit
Saturday October 4th, 7-10pm
Space Montrose, 1706 Westheimer Rd, Houston, TX 77098
Free Admission & Open to the Public
Music, drinks and nibbles provided
*First 25 attendees will receive a limited edition fuzzy grapefruit print!*