Mark Todd, Van Saro, SiMON Sotelo, Andy Steele, Hui Tan

Mark Todd, Van Saro, SiMON Sotelo, Andy Steele, Hui Tan


Mark Todd, Van Saro, SiMON Sotelo, Andy Steele, Hui Tan

July 1 – 31, 2011
Artist Reception: Friday, July 1st; 8-11 PM


Mark Todd “Force Field”

Mark Todd’s last show with us (January 2010 at BSFA) was covered by USA Today. He continues his process of reinterpreting, deconstructing and adopting classic iconic comic imagery in his July 2011 La Luz de Jesus Gallery show, “Force Field”. The works reference snippets of abstracted comics and combine many covers and characters, melding them together in mixed media paintings and layered collage works, producing rich layers of oozing, fragmented and multiple plains. Anchoring the show will be a large dimensional centerpiece installation – a full scale, comics inspired fireworks stand composed of wood, chicken wire, lights and flags with painted surfaces.


Van Saro “Coming of Age”

Van Saro was a very late addition to this year’s annual Everything But the Kitschen Sync show, but the quality of his work was apparent immediately. His fine art interpretaion of his spraycan roots lifts him head and shoulders above the majority of this generation’s graffiti writers. His work is polished, but his point of view is raw, illuminating a biographical connection to two very distinct art forms with a fresh voice in both.

“From the time that I had crayons in my hand I loved to draw, so I guess it seemed natural for me to become an artist. However, the path from crayons to today has been a rough ride. I am proudest of the fact that despite everything that has happened, I never gave up on my life’s ambition.
I have spent many years obsessively perfecting my skills as a painter and storyteller. Following in the footsteps of artists like William Bougureau, Charles Bargue, and Norman Rockwell, I am bringing to life the stories of my world. However, unlike other classical artists, both present and past, I use graffiti to help complete the story within my paintings. Stories of sadness, humor, love, despair, and everything in between. I try to create my paintings to be like music. Songs have an incredible ability to translate emotions and thoughts, and this is what I’m striving for in my artwork”.

This is Van Saro’s first featured exhibition at La Luz de Jesus.


SiMON Sotelo “Ideal / Languages”

“Often there is no pattern or merit to the art I enjoy creating. Static images flood my daydreams and then find their way into the real world by means that I’m not sure I understand. I find comfort in the strange and dark faces I recreate on my canvas. It seems that no matter what their expression might be, I feel excited bringing life to a stranger’s face. My clayboard work is a nostalgic look back at the art that surrounds my culture and one of my childhood obsessions; stories of tragic love. By far nostalgia is my favorite emotion, taking me back to moments when my imagination was very real. The process can seem painstaking but getting lost when I’m rendering is indescribable. I love all the spoils and splendors of making art.” –SiMON Sotello


Andy Steele “Deliverance”

“Since the dawn of human existence, cultures have been defined by their differing traits, traditions, fads, and fashions. These differences, when viewed by outsiders and taken out of context, are often seen as bazaar, grotesque, or comical. Early religious pictographs and iconography depicting stories about deities, creation, popular customs, heroes, and villains fascinate me. Much of my inspiration comes from this visual history and folklore. My goal is to scramble and quilt these cultural and physical differences in to my own catawampus visual iconography. Your interpretation of the story is welcomed and encouraged. I am a storyteller, shamelessly patching together myth and truth with little regard for historical timelines. Like all storytellers my statement is a reflection of the world around me. Fictional and non-fictional legends of the last millennia are so readily available for consumption to be scrutinized, filtered, and reflected. Television, movies, books, the Internet, businesses, clubs, and homes provide a window into human temperament. With this veritable information buffet, it is up to me to pick and choose what I feel is interesting, beautiful, monstrous, gratuitous, humorous, and culturally valid. I am a collector of people and their cultures. I try not to deny what I truly see, just reflect it.”


Hui Tan “A Fairytale of Chinese Childhood”

Hui Tan’s colorful images frolic with childlike energy. Equal parts fantasy and memory, the China of her character-populated landscapes manages to elicit nostalgia in those who have never even been to her homeland. If that’s not an achievement, I don’t know what is.

When she was 5 years old, she started to study and practice drawing and painting. After receiving a Bachelor Degree from the University of China, she drew illustrations for newspapers and magazines, designed characters for TV shows and taught at the GuangZhou Children’s palace. Over 200 of her serial illustrations were published in the GuangZhou daily newspapers depicting the city life of young Chinese people, the traditional games of Chinese children and the traditional customs of both urban and country folk. In short, she creates art to tell stories.

“I feel a strong need, as an artist, to preserve Chinese traditions before they are lost or forgotten. I have spent many years traveling throughout China, taking photographs and studying the people. I have documented all that I have seen and experienced and want to apply this on canvas through my paintings. When I was creating my series of the Chinese children’s traditional games, I wanted to depict them as funny and playful stories. I loved to paint the happiness and fulfillment in the children’s faces and gestures. You can almost hear their little voices and the surrounding sounds. I want for all to enjoy and to experience what I have. I have been in United States for over two years now. My desire is to continue to draw and paint and share with all!”

Contact Matt Kennedy, Gallery Director for availability and purchase info: (323) 666-7667

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