Looking for something special? Then save the date because this weekend Thinkspace Projects is pleased to present three exciting new exhibitions sure to pull your artistic heartstrings. Honouring the extraordinary work of three artists, you’re invited to delve into the creative depths of Kayla Mahaffey’s ‘Remember the Time’, Roos van der Vliet’s, ‘Mirrors of Your Soul‘ and Jon Burgerman’s, ‘Fuzzy Faces’.
There’s always something exciting happening at Thinkspace Projects so if you still want more, they have a full schedule of online events for all exhibitions, including virtual tours, live streaming, interviews and much more… so be sure to follow their blog Sour Harvest to stay updated on all the artsy things you love! If you’re looking to add to your budding collection of art, take a moment and visit their store to view available inventory.
Opening Reception: Saturday, September 18 | 6-9pm
Exhibition Dates: September 18, 2021 – October 9, 2021
4217 W. Jefferson Blvd., Los Angeles, CA. 90016
#310.558.3375 | [email protected]
Thinkspace Projects is honored to present Kayla Mahaffey’s latest solo show, ‘Remember the Time.’ Mahaffey examines the language of nostalgia in this collection of large-scale new works on canvas. Summer days, children playing, neighborly love, peace…quiet. Nostalgia creates a shroud of positivity, coating childhood memories and glossing over the rougher moments. Although past chaos and hate have always been present, there is a shared recollection of peaceful times. Mahaffey examines this cyclical phenomenon in ‘Remember the Time,’ acknowledging that though we are in the midst of a difficult time, heavily influenced by generations before, there is value in the sugar-coated nostalgia as well.
There have been numerous occasions where we omit the truths of our past to only be met with the disappointments of the future. An never ending cycle that has influenced our current era for the best and the worst. Even though we’re currently going through a very troubling era, let’s take a moment to remember those times where we felt the most safe or where we felt the happiest. Many of us wish to go back to that life, but not to change anything, but to feel a few cherished things, once again.
Mahaffey herself finds comfort in the fond memories of her childhood, creating a signature style heavily influenced by the very cartoons that filled those carefree childhood moments. Mahaffey is known for her hyper realistic renderings accented with elements of pop surrealism and animation. Her colorful works depicting Black children in the midst of cartoon-like capers and contemplations speak of youth, fantasy, and creativity. She channels the fresh eyes of a child, beautifully rendering scenes that transport the viewer to that very period of life.
While the word cartoon has certain childish connotations, Mahaffey has highlighted the true importance of this lighthearted entertainment. She acknowledges that cartoons are often the first time children are exposed to the concept of morality, with a clear right and wrong, giving simple characters and stories a layered and complex second life. Mahaffey, a self-proclaimed nerd, is able to elevate these elements within her work, reminding us that cartoons were once an important escape during their early years, and there’s nothing to say they cannot be again. Her work inspires viewers to return to that state of mind, providing a necessary escape when the surrounding world has become increasingly difficult.
About the Artist // Kayla Mahaffey (aka Kayla May) is a contemporary artist specializing in Illustration and Fine Arts. Her style being a mixture of pop art and Afro-surrealism makes for a bright and colorful experience that packs a punch as well as sends an important message with each piece. Born on the Chicago South Side, she has a strong sense of resilience and community that is displayed in her art work time and time again. She studied at the American Academy of Art in Downtown Chicago, taking some classes, before leaving in 2017 to pursue art full-time.
Thinkspace Projects is excited to present Roos van der Vliet’s latest solo show, ‘Mirrors of Your Soul.’ Featuring an entirely new collection of the hyperrealistic depictions of hair she is known for, there is a piercing energy at the heart of each piece.
The body of work is the result of the recent pandemic, a return to portraits at a time of extreme isolation. Van der Vliet begins each painting with the eyes, bringing the subject to life from that first moment, a magnetic vitality that is immediately evident to viewers. While the concepts of this solo exhibition are familiar for the artist–hair, piercing eyes, golden hour light–the intention behind the works has changed. Rather than focusing on differences, ‘Mirrors of Your Soul’ highlights the similarities between us, emphasizing that we are all more alike than we often care to admit.
We are all dealing with the same stuff around the world, although all stories are unique, all countries are different and the amount of suffering clearly differs from person to person, it’s all stories in space and time. In our very essence we are all the same. That what binds us are not our differences, our personal stories, our childhood trauma’s, our successes in life, it’s the fact that we’re all here at the same time as one species, the human race.
Roos van der Vliet’s solo exhibition is a means of communication, an effort on the part of the artist to interact and connect with each viewer through the eyes of her paintings. Following a period of such tremendous loneliness, safe and varied interaction is more important than ever. Through her work, van der Vliet aims to diversify the ways we connect and offer a new catalyst for reflection.
About the Artist // Roos van der Vliet (b. 1985) is a Dutch artist, based in Duiven, the Netherlands. She got her BFA in 2009, and has been painting ever since, creating work that has been exhibited throughout the world. She is known for her hyperrealistic portraits where women stare through the confines of their hair with a striking gaze, and her more abstract paintings of swirling hair compositions with brightly colored birds. Painting is like meditation to Roos, especially when she paints what she’s known for best: hair. It is a way to draw back from the enigmatic world that overwhelms her and leaves her with more questions than answers. From rough strands to the tiniest hairs, whenever she finds her repetitive flow, her mind wanders off into the stillness of her being, where she finds an understanding of her own existence, her mortality and her triviality in the grand scheme of things.
Jon Burgerman (b. 1979 UK) is NYC based artist instigating improvisation and play through drawing and spectacle. He is a purveyor of doodles and is often credited and referenced as the leading figure in the popular ‘Doodle’ art style.