The exhibit we’ve all been anticipating is OHWOW’s group show entitled IT AIN’T FAIR: MATERIALISM at this year’s Art Basel Miami Beach 2011. The opening reception was Thursday night and we can certify, the collection is a hit. The theme for this year’s installment (the fourth year for OHWOW) was “Materialism”. The group of artists featured in the show was a healthy diverse bunch – Daniel Arsham, Justin Beal, Scott Campbell, Peter Coffin, Dan Colen, N. Dash, Michael Genovese, Luis Gispert, Angel Otero, José Parlá, Aurel Schmidt, Aaron Young and many more.
We caught up with one of OHWOW’s prized artists Luis Gispert featured at the event who was kind enough to answer a few personal questions about his work. For more information on the gathering Thursday night, check out the Miami New Times overview.
(Luis Gispert looks on one of his earlier works)
Where were you raised and describe your childhood growing up?
As a boy in the 70’s I grew up in the Washington Heights area of Manhattan. I had long solitary play hours creating worlds to escape boredom. In the 80’s the family relocated to the Little Havana neighborhood in Miami. The colorful chaos the city afforded at that time dislodged creative energy in me and my family. There are no artists in my family, but as political refuges in a new country, they possessed uncanny creativity to survive.
Do you remember the moment you first decided to be an artist? Tell us your earliest memory of needing to self-express through the arts?
Kindergarden at a Montessori school. As early as I can remember I was making things. I haven’t been able to stop.
Can you describe for us your pieces that will be featured at OHWOW this week?
A new direction. A new beginning.
You like to work in different mediums – photographs, film, sound, and sculptures. Are there any other new challenging mediums you are trying to conquer?
A feature length narrative film.
What music or band in your iPod have you been creating to lately?
Big K.R.I.T, the XX, Wale, Danny Brown, Esben & The Witch, Mirror Mirror, Tona La Negra…
What is the one thing that makes you stop in your tracks the most? The one thing that tends to grab your attention emotionally?
We understand you are of Cuban-American decent. Does your heritage play a role in any of your body of work?
Unconsciously it will always be there
Hip Hop is an ingredient that seems to be a prevalent theme. What is it about the overall culture that draws you to explore this?
Culture in general is what drives my studio practice. My complicated relationship to the world outside of myself. Hip Hop happens to be one of the innumerable layers in the world that captivate me.
Can you tell me the most inspiring country you’ve been to in 2011?
Would “Spiral Jetty” in Utah count as another planet?
What’s next for you?
Project April 2012, OHWOW LA. New sculptures brewing in the studio.
To view Luis Gispert’s work and all the other artists curated by the OHWOW family, visit their gallery this weekend at 81 NE 40 Street in the Miami Design District. Hours are Friday and Saturday from 11:00 am - 7:00 pm, and Sunday 11:00 am - 5:00 pm.