If we put the feminist commitment of Frida Kahlo and the surreal aesthetic of Rene Magritte, we would obtain – without detracting from its own merit, of course – a sublime pastiche named Tasha Kusama: dual surrealist modern pop (and if I missed any adjective, wait for me, I'll find it right now).
This Californian artist, who grew up in San Francisco, already has more than 20 exhibitions to her credit.s, in addition to a very specific personal stamp: the unfolding of the self, the incorporation of conceptual and existential contradictions, embodied in an aesthetic proposal perfectly lubricated in oil paintings of the postmodern world. He plays with the duality, caresses it and deconstructs it.
The references to the Mexican communist painter from the beginning of the last century are undeniable. Like Kahlo, she has her version of the interconnected hearts of two women who are the same and not, conjugating in a contradictory and complementary duality.
In his work Girls Hearts (above) Kusama's tribute to The two Fridas (below), by the Mexican painter. Sources: Tasha Kusama and Google Arts & Culture
The influence and tribute in no way tarnishes the work and reversions of Tasha Kusama, whose resume shows her impeccable training: in 2008, the year in which she graduated from the Fine Arts degree at the ArtCenter, she obtained the BFA in Illustration. Her work has been exhibited in galleries in Los Angeles, Santa Monica, San Diego, NY and Copenhagen, among twenty other cities. He has had notable appearances in Hi-Fructose, Juxtapoz, American Illustration, Cartoon Network's XNUMXth Anniversary Book, and ArtCenter's Dot Magazine.
It has been hosted by galleries such as Sloan Fine Art, in New York, and collectively, places such as La Luz de Jesús (Los Angeles), Mohs Exhibit (Copenhagen) and Fresh stART (Santa Monica).
Seksigrillz, by Tasha Kusama. Source: Tasha Kusama
Due to both her personal profile as a mother and her activity as a teacher at the ArtCenter for Kids, Tasha Kusama admits that her recent work has a great influence on motherhood, in the sense of raising a generation absorbed by immediacy and contempt for the future. , in exchange for living the here and now to the fullest.
“As the mother of two teenagers at this point in my life, I often try to imagine life through their eyes,” the artist told contemporary art magazine Hi Fructose.
“Life through selfies. Quantity over quality. Instant versus delayed gratification. Yosemite vs. the mall. As we become more and more inundated with the stuff of life, the hundreds of thousands of $2.80 pieces of jewelry at Forever 21, the endless abyss of Internet images. I'm exploring what it's like to just be in this age of 'life online': our projected selves. I am interested in the dichotomy of our inner life versus our outer life”.
The description that he makes of his work, as a fusion of "super false" pop cultural elements, in front of the natural world, and the contemplation of many of his pieces, also make us think of another reference: the surreal Flemish, René Magritte.
soft but hard one of Kusama's oil paintings, inevitably summons us to la magie noire which is exhibited in the museum dedicated to the Belgian, in the city of Brussels.
The dichotomy, the duality, the opposites that complement each other: earth fused to the sky through the body of a woman, the being within which the genders merge to give new existence. The woman herself, as an expression of intrinsic duality. soft but hard, from Kusama (left). la magie noire, by Magritte, from 1945.
"I'm often in an existential space," the artist told Dot, "contemplating what it means to be here, what we're doing with our time, and what's valuable or important to us."
And how not to make use of surrealism, existentialism and feminism to be able to read, navigate and reach a good port, in this immediate society, of increasingly fallacious and futile icons.
In addition to painting in fine art galleries, Kusama has worked with different brands, for her branding: the Skirball Museum, Moca, Uniqlo, Target, JCP, Kenzo, Trina Turk, Macys, Quiksilver, Levis, Vans, Michael Kors and Hermes, among others.
More of the artist's work can be found on her social networks and on tashakusama.com, where one must be willing to dive into the mirror and look at oneself from the other side of it.