Intimum Introitum Details Mat Hurtado's Crazy Life Journey

Categories: art

Courtesy Marcas Gallery
Mat Hurtado, "Priorities"
The Loteria game-- a traditional Mexican-version of bingo-- is a staple in Mexican culture, especially for young Mexis who grew up playing it and are well versed in its bright, colorful illustrations and varied characters. It's this game that young Chicano artist Mat Hurtado uses as a cultural signifier for his heritage, while playing with the game's original symbols and changing them up to let the viewer in on his life experiences, sense of humor and, of course, a gage on Hurtado's painting talents. These works are part of Hurtado's first solo show 'Intimum Introitum,' starting this weekend at Marcas Gallery.

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The Late Chicano Artist Gilbert 'Magu' Lujan's Lowrider Bomb Rides Again!

Categories: Latino scene, art

Courtesy of the Muck
Jaime Zacharias' Tribute to Magu
One of the most firme lowrider bombs ever is making its way to the Muckenthaler Cultural Center in Fullerton today. Gilbert "Magu" Luján first painted the body of his 1950 Chevy coupe with the vibrant brushstrokes that made him an influential Chicano artist. The car traveled the nation, not on a cross-country trip, but as a centerpiece for the "Hispanic Art in the United States" tour that stopped at prominent museums along the way. Luján had to give up the storied ride during hard financial times. It traded hands and eventually ended up at an auto pawn shop in Long Beach.

That's when Fullerton resident and Chicano art enthusiast Paul Dunlap happened upon the Chevy coupe and bought it. He contacted Luján to restore it to its former glory and an a friendship was born.

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[VIDEO] Artist 'Hypocritical Gender' Saws Against the Gender Grain

Even in the world of art, where people are expected to go against the mainstream, ladies are still paired with specific mediums. Females do the jewelry making, sewing, and scrapbooking while the woodwork and welding are for the boys. Vanessa Gaston of Hypocritical Gender doesn't like this idea, and wants to change our expectations of women and their craft.

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Dinner In Five Parts Pairs Quality Food With Amazing Music

Courtesy of Jim Colombo
In the last 50 years, the way that we consume food has drastically changed. Take Buffalo Wild Wing's for example, you're offered an iPad to play games as you walk in the door. Sports stream throughout plasma's just about everywhere you look and contests for eating dangerously hot wings commence here and there, as well. Maybe you're more fond of staying in and whipping up a delicious, gluten-free, meal as you binge on Orange Is The New Black, but either way it's evident that the world is in need of a culinary renaissance. People are not only craving a richer dining experience, they're expecting it.

Wednesday, July 29th at 7p.m. Five Crowns will delight and entice attendees as they present Dinner In Five Parts. It's time to be present, taste that subtle hint of mache as it flirts with ricotta salata in your mouth and bare witness to how the dining landscape can shape your sensory experience.

Five courses, five pairings, five musicians, five sets, and five senses amiss the charming Corona Del Mar, English garden. Creative genius Allen Moon, of Santa Ana Sites, has brought together Chris Roundtree, of wild Up, to curate a live set list composed by Missy Mazzoli, Morton Feldman, Andrew Tholl, J.S. Back, and Jodie Landau.

The conventional setting of musicians gathering before attendees will be stripped as performers intersperse throughout the space. Moon explains, "When you're able to break down the barriers it can become a very powerful experience. [Roundtree] breaks down formality and address' accessibility, allowing the audience to experience it in a personal way, that only can happen in this sort of environment."

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Hannah Hooper of Grouplove Partners With Volcom For a Fashion Line

Categories: art

Though she's primarily known as one of the two singers in indie pop outfit Grouplove, there's more to Hannah Hooper than showcasing her pipes. Before she fell into music, she was deeply immersed in the art and design worlds of San Francisco and New York City. That's why when the opportunity presented itself for the singer to collaborate with Costa Mesa's Volcom, she couldn't resist.

The aptly titled Lady Grouplove--which is also her Twitter handle--includes denim jackets, crop tops, and leggings - offers an eclectic variety of easy-to-wear, casual attire that emulates her own unique style. It's out now and available at Volcom stores,, Tilly's locations, and retailers where Volcom is sold.

"I have a friend, Daniel, who works for Volcom and he's been outfitting our crew since the band started," she explains. "He said the women's department at Volcom was feeling my style, so we went in for a meeting and one thing led to another and all of a sudden we had a line."

Hooper designed the patterns and the six-piece line and the inspiration came from her art background. She was inspired by a Keith Haring exhibit she went to in San Francisco and channeled the black and whites and other color elements in his work into her line.

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Atreyu's Alex Varkatzas is OC's Rockstar Tattoo Apprentice

Josh Chesler
Rich Pineda (left) switched from music to tattooing years ago. Varkatzas (right), isn't hanging up the mic just yet, but he's beginning his inking career.
According to Detective Rust Cohle (portrayed by Matthew McConaughey) of HBO's True Detective, "life is barely long enough to get good at one thing."

Ektor Alex Varkatzas, best known as the lead vocalist of Atreyu, is doing his best to prove that idiom incorrect.

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Darkness Creeps into Disneyland on Bats Day Weekend

Photo of Bats Day in the Fun Park courtesy of
It was only a matter of time, but dark imagery and creepy subcultures have irrefutably infiltrated pop culture. From fans of music genres like death metal and industrial to adherents of retro and retro-futuristic art movements such as Edwardianism and steampunk, folks who wear predominant amounts of eerie clothing are everywhere, but short of gathering in their respective niches for concerts and conventions, there are few events that bring the black masses together for a grand hootenanny.

Bats Day not only does this--for what has grown into a three-day event--but the event cuts right into the heart of the most genteel of pop culture icons; for, the culmination of Bats Day is a swarming of creatures of the night into Disneyland for "Bats Day in the Fun Park." The two days which precede the dark wave are filled with varieties of events, which have included concerts, contests, a marketplace, and a masquerade. Noah Korda, who goes by "Noah K," is the heart of Bats Day, and he was happy to shed some light on this celebration of darkness.

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Former Operator of a DIY Punk Venue Finds His Place in the Art World

Categories: art

Courtesy of Tyler Spangler
Tyler Spangler
Relocating to a 250 sq. ft. trailer on the beach in the Pacific Palisades, 29 year-old Tyler Spangler grew up on the coast of Orange County where he spent his days surfing the numbered streets in Newport and working at Jack's Surfshop. It wasn't until he'd graduated from Cal State Long Beach that he became the chamberlain of an illegal punk rock concert venue that foreshadowed a blossoming career as a graphic artist.

The clean-cut, Kurt Cobain look-alike from Huntington Beach began making moves when he befriended the young members of former punk band Joe's Garage. "[They] had trouble finding shows because they were under 21 and a lot of times [venues] make bands pay to play," Spangler says.

"They told me they liked playing a lot," he says. "It was kind of selfish of me because I just wanted to see them play more, so I told them I'd get them more shows."

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GCS Returns to Downtown Santa Ana

GCS Santa Ana
Art on view at the new GCS Santa Ana
The face of the Downtown Santa Ana area has been changing tremendously lately, with more restaurants and nightlife spots bringing many a bustling crowd passing through its streets on any given night. In the artist scene, DIY spots like Top Acid still bring in a steady flow of youths clamoring to be a part of its underground music scene.

But one thing about the artist community here is that when a part of it is missing, the void is felt deeply. Thus when GCS Santa Ana, a hip hop-based streetwear and urban art gallery, announced in April 2013 that after five years of operations it would be closing its doors, the tidal wave of grief set in. Many feared that Jack Jakosky, the new owner of the Santora Building where GCS Santa Ana claimed residence, had evicted GCS owner Hector Ruiz after having run longtime Santora residents out, but Ruiz states simply that nothing could be further from the truth. "We fulfilled our first five-year lease," Ruiz explains. "We would have loved to have continued in that space but the economics didn't make sense for us. Quite frankly, we just weren't making any money."

See also: Is Hip-Hop Culture Gentrifying Santa Ana?

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Queen George Breaks The Rules in Santa Ana

Photo Courtesy of Ate9 dANCE cOMPANY
Imagine for a moment that the traditional restrictions of a seated audience and stage bound performers are erased, and that spectators are given the freedom to wander about a space and take in the performance as closely as they wish. This idea of liberating an audience to engage with the artists will be tested on Saturday night at the Santora building, with the dance installment "Queen George." The event comes courtesy of the traveling art forum Santa Ana Sites (SAS), which will once again offer an artistic venture in an unlikely setting.

Allen Moon, the creative mastermind behind Santa Ana Sites, previously tapped a rock star cellist to perform in a sprawling artist compound for the last SAS event. For Queen George, his forum gives the audience a chance to explore a series of dance installments created by acclaimed choreographer, Danielle Agami. Duets will be staged throughout two levels of the Santora building, along with solo performances in separate rooms for one audience member at time. The performances will be carried out by members of Agami's Ate9 dANCE cOMPANY, and will incorporate custom furniture made by carpenter Amir Raveh. The furniture designs are a curious blend of new materials and misfit leftovers and will be flown in to Santa Ana from Raveh's studio in Israel for the performance.

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