Alto Gallery's current group exhibition "Nuevo Antiguo" is the brainchild of artist and curator Victor Escobedo. Part of a grand narrative to be developed over years and multiple art shows, "Nuevo Antiguo" is but a visual introduction to the mixed media artist's concept. Inspired by nature and ancient cultures as well as those of the present, Victor brings it all together in a rich and cohesive way, hinting at a beautiful and complex world to come. Victor sat down with us and answered a few questions about his history and what drives him.
1) Where are you from? Where do you work/reside?
I was born and raised in Los Angeles. I moved to Denver in 2006 and I am currently doing full-time art and graphic design.
2) Did you attend art school? Or are you self-taught?
Both. I grew up with art -- my father is a custom framer in Los Angeles. I decided to attend the Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design a few years after moving to Denver and received my BFA in illustration in 2011.
3) How would you describe your style? What’s your medium/media of choice?
I don’t know... I heard someone say “Graphic Mythos” once. I use an array of media, screenprints, block prints, pen and ink, acrylic, fabric, sewing, and sculpture. I enjoy being able to express myself on many levels.
4) What themes/philosophies/aesthetic principles guide your work?
My cultural heritage plays a huge part in my thematic aesthetic. My family is from the region called the Yucatan Peninsula (in Mexico), home to the ancient Maya, whose artistic expression is most definitely present. Alongside many Eastern philosophies, Western culture, and physics.
5) Are you associated with a gallery? Co-op? Collective? DIY space?
I am currently co-curating at Alto Gallery, I am on the Birdseed Collective board of directors, and I am a part of Camp Kalamath, a creative studio space.
6) What does your creative process consist of? Any rituals/habits/superstitions?
I often do a lot of research, both for visual referencing and conceptual planning, and I put on music for sure, it’s a must.
7) What is the biggest challenge you face in making art? How do you work through it?
Time management, and I’m still working on that.
8) What drives you to create? What do you hope to achieve?
Life experiences drive me to create. I hope to achieve a body of work throughout my life that will eventually be preserved in museums, galleries, private collections, and on regular people's walls. I want everyone to love it enough to own it.
9) What is your earliest art-related memory? What/who gave you the art bug?
I was in elementary school, it was an early release day, and my Pops took me to his work till my older sister got home from school. He sat me down and gave me brushes, mat board and paints to keep me entertained. When I finished it I called it the Amazon, he framed and matted it.
10) Most influential artists? Dream collaboration?
I’m inspired by all of what the 21st century has to offer. My dream collaborations is to work with as many contemporary artists as possible, but I would love to collaborate with Charles Bojorquez.
11) What especially fascinates you outside of art? Any secret talents/passions?
I would say Mother Nature. Colorado has some awesome trails. I like music, I mess around with the guitar and bass, and like writing lyrics but few people will ever hear that stuff.
12) Rep your hood/haunts.
13) What role do you feel you play/aim to play in Denver’s art community?
I want to be a staple figure in the Denver art community for originating a style.
For more of Victor Escobedo's work, follow him on Instagram: @the_art_of_victory