Trace Mendoza’s “Always Lurking” at Daniel Rolnik Gallery opens Dec. 12th, 2015. The concept behind this show is as follows:
While Trace Mendoza was in college, a freak flood broke out causing the artist to lose everything. Trace stood In the ruins of his room and had an epiphany that would change his life and artistic vision forever. A vision that he could alter his memories of the past and create a new narrative for his future by repetitively deconstructing the characters involved in his life.
He began by collecting photographs of family and friends and with vigor filled his small notebooks with their images to the point where their spines break and burst apart. The books allow Trace to fulfill his godhead and would eventually grow beyond his own realm of understanding – like a Jungian jungle of dreamscape psychology. For example, the Virgin of Guadalupe is done in various color-ways until it becomes abstract and hidden amongst a field of tiny cowboys fighting a battle.
When you hold one of the little books in your hands, it’s like holding an ancient artifact of tomorrow. Something anthropologists will dig up in Anaheim, where Trace grew up, and analyze as a bible-like tome of information. These little works in the books eventually take on larger meanings and find themselves further deconstructed and reborn onto large, multi-dimensional panels.
According to the gallery, it was only fitting that Trace’s debut solo show be based on his character of Santa Claus – who always appears with the phrase “Always Lurking” nearby and repeats often throughout almost all of his books. Maybe, in Trace’s world, Santa Claus is God? After all, he knows when you’ve been bad or good, so be good for goodness sake. Therefore, Santa Claus must always be present and watching you in the shadows and light, always lurking.
In simple terms, Santa Claus is fucking stalking you! And you’ve got to fight back. This is what the exhibit “Always Lurking” is all about. This is what life is all about. This is the Christmas spirit – death, rebirth, and the willingness to live a blessed and grateful life.
The flooding of the gallery will commence on opening night, when Trace Mendoza is handed the keys to the gallery to do whatever he likes with it. Santa Claus will be present too, coming off of the paintings and into real life. The opening of “Always Lurking” at Daniel Rolnik Gallery is not to be missed!
Trace Mendoza graduated from Laguna College of Art and Design [LCAD] in 2012 with a bachelors degree in Illustration. His artwork is often selected to represent his alma mater in print and digital ads that have appeared in Juxtapoz Magazine.
The LA Times also selected Trace Mendoza for a feature story about students showing in galleries before they graduate. Since then, Trace’s original paintings have been showcased in art fairs such as SCOPE Miami and the LA Art Show as well as 25 exhibits in Southern California at galleries like Art Cube, AR4T, BG Gallery, and Flower Pepper Gallery.
“Always Lurking” will be Trace Mendoza’s debut solo show. However, gallery owner and curator, Daniel Rolnik, has worked with and collected art from Trace Mendoza starting all the way back in 2012,
In addition to his gallery work, Trace Mendoza has painted murals for The US OPEN OF SURFING, Legacy Car Show, Doll Hut Music Venue, Wahoo’s of Costa Mesa, and the international surf brand Hurley’s headquarters in Orange County. These murals have received over one million combined impressions online and have even been transformed into limited edition Converse sneakers and Hurley board shorts.
The opening reception of Trace Mendoza’s debut solo show “Always Lurking” will take place this Saturday – December 12th, 2015 from 7pm – 11pm at Daniel Rolnik Gallery.