September 12 - October 17, 2015
Paul Loya Gallery is proud to present LATINOS USA, a solo exhibition by Brooklyn based artist, Felipe Merida, AKA Tipi Thieves. This is Felipe’s first solo show in Los Angeles and will be opening to the public on September 12, 2015. A preview reception will be hosted on September 5th, by invitation only.
This collection of portraits focuses on Latin communnity working in the USA. Felipe recreates these unique characters from photographs taken anonymously from around his neighborhood and as he observes his local surroundings . As a migrant himself from Guatemala, he has tuned into their unique style, the worn clothing of Levi’s 501 jeans, Timberland construction boots, Nike baseball caps, all American iconic branded pieces, now become the uniform of these individuals. This honest and curious insight is what gives Felipe’s work its gentle appeal wrapped in technical mastery of watercolor and ink.
Accordding to Felipe
“The collection is also a nostalgic reminder of my roots. Coming from a central-American background I am taken back to my childhood, a sense of familiarity that gives me a desire to paint them. Their work ethic so admirable, the importance of earning for the family so noble, and so I paint them to celebrate them. To show my admiration.”
The layout in each piece is intentional in every stroke and color used. Each character is extracted from their surroundings, and placed floating on a white page, encouraging you to look at all the details within, to see the wear of the clothing, the texture of the textile, the facial expression, the material of the shoes, the hair texture, age and characteristics. An obsessive eye to the details, laboring over each and every aspect. Felipe allows you to oberve and take notice through his eyes and be inspired by what drives him to create.
Felipe Merida is a native Guatemalan. His family moved to San Francisco in ’97 where he studied High School at the School of the Arts and a year at the San Francisco Art Institute. He then moved to Toronto Canada where he graduated with a degree in illustration.