By Hayley Thomas
A fiercely creative cross-section of the Central Coast art scene will fly under-the-radar no more thanks to the Young Savages art show unfolding at Studios on the Park in Paso Robles this Saturday, March 2 from 5 to 8 p.m.
The emerging talent – age 17 to 38 or so – represent an artistic community underrepresented in county galleries and art venues, according to show curator and San Luis Obispo artist Neal Breton.
“These are young people, and they have fresh ideas and they have new ways to say old things,” Breton said. “I feel like Paso is hitting a renaissance, and if that continues, [the area] will offer one of the very best opportunities for younger people. Young artists should start making the drive over the hill from San Luis Obispo.”
Urban and lowbrow art, surrealism and suggestivism – as well as tattoo and street art esthetics – will be on full display at the upcoming show. About 25 artists hailing from across the county – and a few from the Los Angeles area – will bare their souls on 15 by 30 in canvas. Records spun by DJ Malik and home-brewed ale for the sipping round out the unique art experience.
“It is very much the DIY esthetic being brought to Paso Robles,” said Breton. “There’s kids in high school doing pieces in the show and people ranging from graffiti artists to commercial artists doing this. It’s going to be a really interesting room and very interesting to see these artists come together.”
The artist said he’s excited to carve out a home for alternative art forms over the grade.
If all goes right, Young Savages may provide that all-important food in the door for a fresh crop of artistic individuals seeking a venue.
“Traditional landscape and traditional ways of painting the landscape are championed in San Luis Obispo, where Paso Robles looks like it has more of an open mind,” Breton said.
Breton knows first hand”: He’s shown his own artwork at Vale Fine Art, located in downtown Paso Robles. That venue, along with Pierce Modern Gallery and the Artery in Atascadero, are all part of a greater push toward artistic inclusivity within the county, he added.
Although some may argue “youth” to be synonymous with novice, Breton urges locals to take a closer look at the show’s long and illustrious roster. San Luis Obispo heavyweight Jeff Claassen of Claassen Gallery, mixed media darling Lena Rushing and eye-catching upstart Alister Dippner are all hardworking Central Coast artists who sell their work regularly, foster the local creative community and continually push the envelope.
As Breton so aptly suggests, “If you like what you see, support it.”
Studios on the Park founder Anne Laddon with program director Sasha Irving, certainly liked what they saw. Irving said a show like young Savages has been a long time coming.
“A lot of these folks are coming from South County and coming from the larger creative community,” said Irving. “We are excited to provide a place for them, where they can be involved and introduce locals and visitors to their work. This is really going to showcase a segment of the artistic community that we haven’t seen in Paso Robles before.”
About the Young Savages
The young Savages exhibition will run through March 21 with an opening on Saturday, March 2 from 5 to 8 p.m. at Studios on the Park.
According to organizers, “The word “savage” takes on several meanings – as a noun, it means primitive and uncivilized; as an adjective it describes an animal or force of nature; a verb weaponizes it into an attack. The Young Savages Collective defies conventional description. Some of them aren’t young (two are 38 and a handful more are in their mid-30s), and they aren’t really a collective in their grouping. Some of this “collective” has yet to cross paths, some prefer complete reclusion. The Young Savages are a loose collection of talented, ascending artists – some use skin as their normal canvas, some use walls, some are commercial in their wares and some prefer to show their work only to their close friends. Some have sold paintings for years and some are embarking upon their first show here at Studios on the Park.”
Artists include: Reid Cain, Neal Breton, Lena Rushing, Kyle Naylor, Lauren Buzzetti, Jason Hudson, Chris Daly, Isaac Yorke, Nick Wilkinson, Jamie Coxon, Jordan Quintero, Lisa Harrison, Drew Daivs, Peter Ljepava, Erica Hamilton, Lakin Hamilton, SOAK, GWAP, Stenzskull, Ty Hjorltand, Chloe Parks, Julian Calvillo, Alister Dippner, Beth Reninger, Scott Osburn, Eric Valdez, and The Free Humanity.
For more information, visit www.studiosonthepark.org.