What: “Trust Me!”
When: Now through August 6
Where: CO Exhibitions
Graphic designer and Minneapolis native Adam Garcia has made a career out of creatively mining his talents in the commercial service of others. There’s the capital-driven interest of Nike, for whom he’s designed sneakers. There’s also the fantastical art he generated for this year’s Soundset music festival. Even though his occupation welcomes an inspired mind, it’s rarely in the name of Adam Garcia.
This makes it all the more interesting that his latest show at Minneapolis’ CO Exhibitions, aptly titled “Trust Me!,” shows Garcia wrapped once again in a blanket of other artists’ interests.
The 2006 MCAD graduate’s 28-piece exhibition is an amalgamation of re-envisioned photographs, paintings and illustrations from both local and national artists. Garcia, who currently lives in Portland, had 28 friends and colleagues submit a work for him to retool.
“The original emails I sent out to everyone had ‘trust me’ at the end with an exclamation point,” he said. “It was kind of a humorous thing in the original email, but it ended up being the name of the show.”
Even with the diversity in source material, Garcia’s overarching aesthetics are decidedly unified. Each print shares the same dimensions along with a limited orange-black color pallet. These rigorous rules to the process may have stemmed from Garcia’s 9-to-5 mindset.
“I wanted this to be really fun and loose, but I found that I couldn’t get away from wrapping it up in this overall system,” he said. “As soon as I wrote ‘trust me’ in the original email I was like ‘Oh my god, that has to be a logo.’”
Even with a mechanized approach to shared attributes, the source material has allowed for a wide expanse of geometry and subject matter. Garcia reappropriated the enveloping floral curves of Portland artist Lloyd Eugene Winter IV toward a smiling cartoon character drenched in psychedelic bliss. Other submitted works like the vanity-laden photography of Twin Cities native Brad Ogbonna approach socio-political realms through Garcia’s stark contrasts of African and European identity.
“When you look at [Brad’s] imagery, a lot of his subjects are white women in their early twenties in these party atmospheres,” Garcia said. “There’s always been something to me that was a little racial about it, so him being in Minneapolis and what that means was with me through the whole process.”
The show’s greatest asset may be this range of exploration. The geometric influences of his source material resound most clearly in moments of simplistic association, particularly in the sexually charged pieces. It’s also these contentious topics that spark questions of reappropriation and recontextualization. For Garcia, these ideas of authority were a conscious part of the process.
“We live in an age where there is this big screen-printed poster culture,” he said. “In that culture, there’s a lot of collaboration and reappropiation, and some of it’s really controversial. Whose work is whose? Where does it come from? How long does it have to be before you can reference it in your own work?”
Even in regards to the show’s more confrontational moments, Garcia says that the submitted artists have the kind of minds and strength to curb any creative differences. Looking at the vibrant diversity and depth to his work, he seems like the kind of guy you can, well, trust.
Nominate an exceptional graduating senior for the upcoming Ski-U-Mah Issue!
UMN students have traveled to Florida colleges to collaborate with students on various projects.
When UMN students plan for a vacation, having trip cancellation travel insurance is a worthwhile commodity to check out.
Minneapolis Used Cars
Give back to the Minnesota community with a boat donation at boat4causes.org.
If you have been involved in a car accident call a Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyer for a free consultation.