by Chad Zachary Mulchin
Random Act A.K.A. Andrea LaHue has been using her street art to beautify and inspire the nation. Born an Army brat, LaHue continues her nomadic lifestyle as she drives the countryside in search of the next great canvas on a building near you.
Mixing mediums from maps, to cityscapes, to photographs, to her trademark flowers. Presently based in L.A., we got a chance to sit down with her. She told us all about her mission, sense of patriotism, and her upcoming show at LAB ART on December 13th.
What stands out about your art?
The one thing that sets me apart from other street artists is that I paint my flowers with outdoor housepaint. I find and abandoned or for lease building. . . The flowers seem to stay up for years. They’re all over the country . . . 51 cities . . . In my travels I discovered Main Street. In each town I painted on a for lease building on Main street.
What about Los Angeles?
Highland, Pico, La Brea and Sunset . . . I’m one of the only artists who’s had a piece up on Hollywood Blvd for like 3 years now . . . I’ve got a poppy at Vice. It’s right near Cahuenga, it used to be a bar, but the sign’s still there and it’s still for lease.
I always paint my flowers, generally every weekend, I go out and hit someplace in the city that needs a little uplifting . . .
Where were you born?
I was born in Italy, in an Army hospital, I cost $4.00. I had one parent in the service, my Dad. We lived in Berlin when the wall was still up. My loose patriotism is pretty firm.
Do you listen to music while you work?
I do sometimes. Out on the street, I used to but I don’t anymore, because people want to talk to me. And I feel like I need to be more aware of what’s going on . . . I’m doing a painting about the Dust Bowl, so I’m watching PBS or listening to Ken Burn’s Dust Bowl as I’m painting it. Because I’m so curious.
What inspires you?
Courage and thoughtfulness. When I see other people uplifting other people, very inspiring . . . when I see artists pushing the envelope . . . when I see people stand up for their rights. I would say people and nature. I can take a walk no matter where I am and see the nature of the city.
How do you want to change the world?
Without them noticing. That’s sort of true and not true. I feel like a turtle, in that, taking my time in getting there, I’m work very hard, but when I get to where I’m going . . . I want the things that I do to be very solid . . . Stable, real, good feeling, forward moving. I want there to be heart and authenticity . . . and a deeper feeling. The more you look, the more you’re filled.
When did you start and what does the future holds for the L.A. street scene?
I started painting out on the street in ’06. There’s a whole big city to paint on. We’ll have our place in art history. There were cave paintings. In Rome they were putting graffiti on the walls . . . . It’s the whole Duchamp theory. If someone is compelled to make a piece of art, then it’s art. Everybody has the right to create and love it when someone exercises that right
You have a show coming up?
Yes, December 13th. It’s at LAB ART. There’s a family vibe there that I’ve never seen in any other art community. Like a collaborative family vibe, couldn’t be happier, I’m so grateful. I’m really excited. The show is called Americana. It has this rich feeling of revolution, independence, and redemption.
On Thursday, street artists Destroy All Design and Septerhed will display their latest individual and collaborative bodies of work in the front room here at the LAB ART Gallery.
Destroy and Sept are not such an unlikely duo. Their work seems to come from a similar spot in the soul not often tapped into by most artists and avoided totally by the average person. Both artist seem to have a natural ability to draw great beauty from the darkness of humanity and convey it into their art in their own unique styles.
Thursday, we will all get to see what these guys have brought back from their most recent trip to the dark side and I can guarantee you it will be something you don’t want to miss.
Perhaps, you have seen his angel of death/virgin mary images around your neighborhood. He is also fond of ice cream cone stencils.
DRONE is one of the sickest San Diego street artists currently enhancing the urban environment. Lucky for us, he hits Los Angeles, too.
Often utilizing a playful style, and embracing the revered icons of Dali, Twiggy, Lichtenstein, or Mondrian. He also maintains his edge through graphic and fashion design. Catch some DRONE today at LAB ART, the best place to see next level street art.
In buff-heavy S.D., view his work on storm drains or high spots. Be sure to keep your chin up and eyes open. You might stumble onto something great.
DRONE, tell us a little bit about your style:
Clean lines and color patterns are usually two elements that are always present in anything I’m working on, although I haven’t found a particular style that I think of as “mine” I just try anything I feel is right for the moment.
What are your favorite mediums?
Acrylics and spray paint are my go to mediums. Paint pens and anything with a crazy drip are fun to use too.
What are your favorite subjects?
Famous faces or people I admire, I like using pop culture references and making fun of our society. Its hard to have a favorite when there are soo many crazy things going on out there.
Where are your favorite spots to hit with street art?
Spots with no cops. Basically any lonely wall looking for love, I dont discriminate nor do I play into “hotspots” for street art.
What inspires you musically?
I like a lot of different music. The music to best inspire me artistically, I would have to stay hip hop, not the radio shit either. I mean underground roots to your boots soulful hip hop. For some reason my work just flows nicer when I listen to it. (either that or I feel nicer) it just works.
How do you want to change the world you live in?
By telling the truth. There are so many lies our there, it would be refreshing to see some truth.
What does LAB ART mean to you?
Its been my home away from home since I first walked in. I’ve never seen a gallery like LAB ART, being a part of such a collective of dope artists under one roof is not only inspiring but a blessing. You can say LAB ART means a lot to me. I met LAB ART when they first opened in May 2011 and fell in love with the gallery. I brought my first piece a few months after which sold on it’s first day of showcase, I’ve been putting pieces into Lab Art ever since.
Meet our own “New Kid On The Block”! Skyler Grey- LAB ART’s youngest street artist!
Music Video: Do Da Drake
the la beat interview
Skyler Grey. Photo by Paula Lauren Gibson
DON’T MESS WITH TEXAS! Becca Gets Ready For Her Colab Show, BABES & BEARS, With Philip Lumbang TONIGHT at LAB ART!
To say the work of Texas based street artist Becca Midwood is in demand could be considered a massive understatement. From Leonardo DiCaprio to Leonard Cohen, the list of names that have commissioned her work is long and impressive. Her stylish ladies can be found on the streets all over the country and at times have been preserved by building owners so they remain a permanent fixture on the urban landscape. One of Becca’s ballsiest (spell check didn’t correct it so it’s a word.) moves was using the stall in the ladies room as her own personal canvas at MOCA during the “Art in the Streets” exhibit last year captured here in this video.
Now, mix her talent with the talent of Philip Lumbang and you have the formula for something incredibly special. Midwood and Lumbang’s styles are drastically different but seem to mesh perfectly. They have been working together a lot this past year, sending paintings back and forth between Austin, Texas and Los Angeles, adding their own personal touches to each piece. All of this effort will culminate tonight in BABES & BEARS, their first colab show. The exhibition will display individual works by each of the artists as well. Having seen most of the work going into this event, it is easy to say you do not want to miss it.
Becca came to town last week and I got the chance to catch up with her and Philip as they put the finishing touches on their work.
Big shout out to Jennifer James! Great to see you! And Jesse! Pleasure to meet you and thanks for the hospitality.
Photos and Article by Matty Fontana
Our friend Hank O’Neal (aka XCIA) has delivered the sickest and slickest street art app
for your iPad, which we’ll launch with a party on November 3 (details to come). In the meantime,
buy XCIA’s Street Art Project: EbookExtreme now! Here’s the link:
Philip Lumbang is currently preparing for his upcoming show with fellow street artist Becca on October 18th here at LAB ART. The two will be displaying their solo work as well as a sizable body of collaboration pieces. I caught up with Philip at his studio to snap some pics do an interview with the artist. The work I was able to preview thus far is nothing less then exceptional on both the team and solo ends of the spectrum.
Q – Where are you from and at what age did you start doing art/street art?
A – I was born and raised in Sacramento California and I got into art at a really early age. I’ve been drawing ever since I can remember, so after high school I went to art school to get my degree is graphic design.
Q – What Kind of kid were you? How important was imagination to you while growing up and how does that translate into your adult life?
A – I was always a crazy kid, with a wild imagination. I guess it was due to all the cartoons I watched back then. without imagination life as we know it wouldn’t exist so I try to keep an open mind for new possibilities and that really keeps me focused at the task at hand.
Q – When did you start painting the bear?
A – I started drawing the bear while I was still in college then, a lot more while I was working as a graphic designer. I really love the idea behind an icon, instantly recognizable. Then I keep working on bear and getting him juuust right. After that I came up with this print idea where a polar bear + grizzly bear = panda bear and I got Daniel Lahoda to release the print along side a video with me painting the three bears in Silver Lake. While I was painting that mural for the first time, I caught the bug and thought it was the coolest thing. Then I started getting my bears up all around town and people loved them, and here we are today.
Q – How are you like the bears/ animals you paint? What part of Philip is in each piece?
A – I don’t think I’m anything like the bear, it’s more like I wish I had more of his qualities haha. Or, maybe he’s like my alter ego, fighting the the negative energies with a big smile.
Q – You mentioned you’ve worked with Shepard Fairey and the Obey team. What was that like? Do you still work with them sometimes?
A- Working at Obey as Sheps graphic assistant was my Harvard. everything done over there has such a level of class and execution it wasn’t hard to get influenced by. I’m not there full time anymore, but, he’ll hit me up for freelance work every now and then.
Q – How did it influence how you’ve approached your art?
A – I guess I just have a higher standard when it comes to creating something. There’s a lot of theory put into action when I get my hands on it. Of course I’ve also picked up a few techniques along the way, all thing I still use to this day.
Q – I hear Shepard is a pretty rad dude. Whats your coolest experience working with such an icon?
A – All I can say is Shep is the MAN, and that is because I’m completely bias, for good reason. His only fault is, he works to much haha!
Q – You just became a Dad recently. Congratulations to you and your lady. How has the little guy inspired your work?
A – Having a child really puts life in perspective. Suddenly thing that use to be important arn’t and the only thing that matters is keeping your kid safe and happy. I take that approach with everything I do, I want to make sure that I can create art and provide my family with all the things they deserve.
Q – When did you meet Becca? How did you guys start collaborating?
A – I love answering this question. I meet Becca on Facebook of all places haha! I noticed she liked one of my post and I just hit her up out of the blue with “hey Becca, I really love your work, we should collab.” and next thing you know she’s sending me pieces to work on and ever since then it’ s been pure magic, really good synergy.
Q – How did the collab show come about?
A – We have shown our collabs in different group shows but never had a duo show together, it was about time to get something started and it just so happen LAB ART was very interested in showing us both.
Q – How did you get involved with Lab Art?
A – I met Iskander at one of my pop up shows at Angel City Brewery, ever since then I’ve been showing at LAB ART.
Right on Philip! Much success in the future. Congratulations to you and your lady on the new addition and thanks for the hospitality!
Here are some shots from my afternoon with Philip.
To say LAB ART street artist, Annie Preece, has been busy the past few weeks would be a huge understatement. Think of it like this, if you took the amount of hours the most decorated swimmer in Olympic history trains in a day and doubled it… you’d still be a few hours short when it comes to the amount of time Preece has put into her work per 24 hours these past few months. The girl just doesn’t stop! She’s done three murals in two weeks, busted out about fifteen canvases, went to Long Beach to live paint at a charity show for a few days, did live painting at a bar on Melrose, and painted a bunch of shoes for a canvas shoe company. Couple that with the interviews she’s done and the preparation for her solo show and two other group shows, you kinda wonder when she actually sleeps. But, She’s loving every minute of it and is extremely grateful for the opportunities she’s earned and the relationships she’s developed over this past year. Preece has become one of the most sought after artists in L.A. The big dogs want to collaborate with her and the collectors can’t wait to have a Preece on their wall. Pun intended. However Annie is no over night success story. She has been working a spray can since she was 16 back in her hometown of San Fransisco. Bombing any open space she could find Annie clearly found her niche. It wasn’t till she was 28 that she picked up a paint brush and found instant comfort expressing herself in a safer more controlled environment.
Annie has battled through some serious adversity in her life as well. Over coming a 13 year struggle with substance abuse. Through which she painted the whole time. At her turning point in her life, Preece used art, along with the overwhelming love for family, friends and most importantly, herself, as inspiration to get sober. Now after a year of sobriety she has really begun to come into her own taking every moment in with the utmost gratitude and a new out look on how she lives her life. She doesn’t take a second for granted and that, I suppose , is the reason she works nonstop!
A true life success story. Annie Preece is someone, whom I feel, will be talked about for years to come.
Annie has been showing at LAB ART since the beginning of 2012. Stop by the gallery if you live in Los Angeles to view some of her fine art in person. If you’re not in town check out the LAB ART website to view some of her work and maybe purchase a Preece of history… See what I did there?
By Matty Fontana of paperpaintandpaste.com
Each Book is an Original. No two copies of the book are identical. In addition to the signatures, the slip-cover of the book features Original Hand-painted Art by LOUIS XXX, and the back of the book features a Wood Panel also Hand-painted by LOUIS XXX.
*Each Book is Numbered of a series of 15.
*The book is housed in a stand-up case.
*Included is an art piece by LOUIS XXX and signed. This piece is available exclusively in the Lab Art Edition.
Documentary short film about April’s “Red Bull Curates” event at Lab Art Gallery. The event brought together Los Angeles’ best street artists to compete for a chance to show their work at the forthcoming Art Basel showcase in Miami (Dec 6-9 2012). Includes interviews with Lydia Emily, KH No.7, Thank You X, Gregory Siff, and others.
Get a signed and sketched copy of “To My Sweetheart” through Lab Art Gallery…
The perfect gift for anyone with a heart.
$40 + shipping/handling
CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE
New high quality reproduction of all 4 classic books in one volume.
New coffee table size. 200 pages.
ORDER NOW to get your personalized copy of TO MY SWEETHEART
If you’d like to specify a NAME for the book to be dedicated to, please email info to firstname.lastname@example.org with your name and order #.
“Ravishing and infinite in its reach… The world Louis lives in, and cheerfully invites us to share, is at once “dark and beautiful” and full of light.” ~Brian Yorkey, Pulitzer and Tony Award winning playwright of ‘Next To Normal’
Sketched, signed books sold exclusively through:
Powder French Books
Photo: Lx. Model: Dana
Lab Art featured artist Louis XXX continues to churn out beautiful, poignant, funny, timeless paintings as though it was the simplest thing in the world. But behind his deceptively effortless style lies a deeply original mind that is able to find permanence in the temporary and create monuments out of intimate moments. These qualities make Louis’ work an ideal complement to the new Steve Carell/Keira Knightly pre-apocalyptic rom-com “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World,” and so it was no surprise to see one of his new works, “Bowie,” make a cameo in a crucial scene:
“Bowie” is currently on display at Lab Art Gallery (217 S. La Brea) and is available for purchase in person at the gallery or online at the Lab Art Online Shop. Many other Louis XXX works are also on sale at Lab Art, including the hauntingly beautiful large-scale “Everything Should Always Be Nice.” Buy one before the world ends. You won’t regret it.
Lab Art Gallery proudly presents its Second Conversation Series, “Starting an Art Collection,” a Q&A with Jay Luchs, Executive Vice President at CBRE; Ken Siman, Publisher at Siman Media Works, Inc; and Ivan Ilan, MOCA LA Drawings Acquisition Committee and MOCA Partner Donor.
VISIT THE LAB ART GALLERY ONLINE SHOP TO BROWSE & BUY THE BEST IN STREET ART 24/7: shop.labartgallery.com
WATCH VIDEO FOOTAGE OF THE EVENT BELOW: