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UNO Show Wrap-Up June 14th, 2012

I’ve been busy with work lately and I’ve been lax in posting about the UNO show. It was a crazy art event I was involved in on April 13th which included DJs, tacos and a great rooster of artists including: Mike Giant, Sam Flores, Greg Lamarche, Hydro 74, Johnny Crap, Dubelyoo, Abe Lincoln Jr, Misk, Doublenaut, Dave Glantz, Matt Barnes, Shingo Shimizu, Rcade, Vlad Hato, Bryan Espiritu, Tavis Coburn, Amber J, Angie Fey, Brian Mendoza, & Matt Darling. The event took place in the 5,000 sq foot Evergreen Brick Works warehouse, and was put on by La Carnita and HXfour. It ended up drawing a massive crowd of 3000 people to the old factory located in Toronto’s Don Valley.

Above: photo by Stella from Food Junkie.

Above: Jamie Lawson, Carolyn Veldstra and myself. Nice to have tough as nails friends to brave the insane ravenous hordes. Below is a great video of the night by iNews Toronto. As you can see it was crazy!

The theme of the show was Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) which is primarily a Mexican holiday that focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for, remember and pay homage to people who have died. I wanted to be respectful to this culture and not do something gimmicky, so I choose to focus on the holiday’s altars or ofrendas (offerings) that celebrate the life of the person through objects they loved, such as musical instruments, photos, and toys. These shrines are also decorated with favourite food dishes and drinks of the dearly departed. The intent is to encourage visits by the souls, so the souls will hear the prayers and the comments of the living directed to them. I really appreciate the concept of this holiday. The idea of remembering and joyfully celebrating a loved one’s life each year is such a wonderful idea, not to mention visually stunning, and I hope to see it in person one day.

These altars also include flowers: orange Mexican marigolds (Tagetes erecta) called cempasúchil (originally named cempoaxochitl) originally connected to the original Aztec holiday and are thought to attract souls of the dead to the offerings. You can see these in my paintings were I’ve shown a twist on the original celebration by showing altars for dearly departed pets and all the food and memorabilia attached to the missed creature. Also, animal skulls are just so fascinating to draw with such a variety of shapes and sizes. So below we start with the horse. I’ll post process shots of these painting soon. A big thanks to Hector Herrera was help with the Mexican translations (make sure you check out his animation work).

Above: Ofrenda a un Caballo (Horse)
acrylic paint & Ink
Image 21.5 x 14.5” (frame 30.5 x 22.5”)

Above: Ofrenda a un Chihuahueño (Chihuahua Dog)
acrylic paint & Ink
Image 11 x 15 (frame 19 x 23”)

Above: Ofrenda a un Gato (Cat)
acrylic paint & Ink
Image 9.5 x 7.5 “(frame 14.5 x 12.5”)

Here’s a piece done for La Carnita a few months back which shows a Day of the Dead skull decorated with the food used in the tacos. What’s not to love about a delicious head of avocado, peppers and of course meat roses? Nice to be able to show the original painting of this at the show too.

Above: La Carnita
acrylic paint & Ink
Image 8 x 11” (frame 13.5 x 17.25”)

Above: Photo by Ivan Kostynyk who has some pretty great work himself. Check out his lettering here . First skull on the left is by Chris Barrett

Above: Zombie Kim Jong Il by Shingo Shimizu and myself and my dear dancing friend Sandy Watters.

Photos above by Sue Holland . Art by Hydro 74 and Doublenaut. Amazing to see the old brick ovens still scattered throughout the building.

Art by Mike Giant, and Tavis Coburn

Thanks to Andrew Richmond from La Carnita and Clay Rochemont HXfour for putting on the event!


One Response to UNO Show Wrap-Up

  1. Pingback: Skull Paintings Process | Jacqui Oakley Illustration & Hand-Lettering

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