Artist: Elmer Guevara & Robert Nehemiah
Gallery: CSULB SOA Gallery
Elmer and Robert have very interesting background. They grew up drawing and they loved drawing ever since. One of the guys was actually preparing for firefighting, but he could not resist his passion for art and decided to come to CSULB to major in Art. Elmer was familiar with graffiti and street art and that is why his art is based on streets and its surroundings. They are both currently attending CSULB as an undergraduate and expect to graduate soon with Art.
Their workpieces are amazing. Elmer and Robert has quite distinct styles. For Elmer, they are quite colorful, abstract, and free. The scale is big and the texture is a bit rugged but sharp. For Robert, scale is rather small and they are less colorful. They both have one person in their art piece but their styles are quite different. Elmer’s art involves street names, person’s hobbies, and basically anything that describes that person. For Robert, only the person itself is there. I can easily tell the person’s emotion and that is how accurate Robert drew each person. It is very detailed.
So for Elmer, the person he drew are people who have impacted his life or just someone who was passing by. He wanted to emphasize the detachment from materialism. He drew a lot of homeless from South LA people so he could bring them to the same spectrum and levels with many other ordinary people. He did not want to distinguish the homeless people as different, because they are us and we are them in many ways. For Robert, he mentioned that his subject and surface was important. He really wanted to define the relationship between each subject. He drew his mentor, his mother and etc. Thus, most important people in his life. They both said that their art work was no longer a class work. They worked outside of the class time. They used their own paints to break from possessions and materials. They also painted on canvas and oil materials that will eventually deteriorate. What this means is that they were really trying to detach from materialism and that is why their gallery title is Immaterial.
Elmer and Robert’s art works really changed my perspectives on how I view people. Although I really did not think homeless people were bad, but I did not think of them as something good either. To be honest, I thought of them as somewhat less of others just because they are homeless. But I was wrong. After observing this gallery, I realized that each individual are unique and special in their own ways. In addition, they can also become a piece of art! They are ordinary and yet extraordinary in so many ways. Also, the detachment from materialism was something I never thought of, because I am constantly wanting a new thing everyday; a bag, a new phone, new clothes and etc. And after what they told me about immaterial, I was able to realize that I was wanting things that I do not really need. Nothing lasts forever and wanting new things would only waste of money and time. I really learned a lot from Elmer and Robert’s gallery and it really impacted my way of thinking about life.