Oakland artist DeadEyes culminates his 2013 Artist in Residence at Redux Studios & Gallery, a creative community program within the Alameda Saint Vincent de Paul Society, with “The Mothership Depot” a solo exhibition celebrating “the key forefathers of the Black Futurist movement: Sun-Ra, a traditional jazz musician who transitioned into free jazz; George Clinton, who went from doo-wop to a self-made free-form style called P-Funk; and Lee Scratch Perry, the seminal reggae producer noted for his innovative studio techniques and production.” Led by a fictional guide “Galacticus,” audiences of the installation and visual art made made from vintage and recycled items recognize The Mothership Depot is a space both narrative as well as illustrative of the concepts not only of reflection amid a long journey as well as recognizing inspiring legends, but as a place from which to propel, receive inspiration and “send those who are ready to leave this world behind for worlds of elevated consciousness that match their level of Funkiness.”
Incorporating motifs from African-American music history as well as traditional African masks, the art exhibition is thoughtfully composed of a wide breadth of mediums and approaches to the subject: decorative art, visual art, murals, and a large installation in the middle of the gallery space, The Shack. The Shack, DeadEyes writes, is based upnon Lee Scratch Perry’s Black Ark music studio, which was filled with memorabilia from his career. In just the past year, DeadEyes has begun creating free-standing installations. The Mothership Depot is his first multi-walled installation his audiences can immerse themselves into a fully-enveloping aesthetic experience. The residency at Redux suits DeadEyes’ style well, as he was among the first local artists to incorporate discarded materials in his street art practice. At Redux, he incorporates vintage pieces and up-cycled materials from the shop in front of the studio and gallery, expounding upon their rich textures and vibrant colors by braiding fabric to swoop down from the ceiling where they meet vintage petrol pumps, evoking an ambiance of a place meant for pause and moments of reflection before transitioning to another space. DeadEyes is a founding member of Black Diamond Shining art collective and Endless Canvas street art blog and ‘zine launched in 2008 that showcases current trends of unique street art in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Comprised of a retail store that features handmade art and crafts made from salvaged and reclaimed materials by local artists, a gallery space exhibiting Artists in Residence and local artists, affordable artist studio space for artists working primarily with salvaged materials, and arts workshops on creative reuse for the community, Redux Gallery & Studios diverts waste from the landfill as well as adding a new layer to Saint Vincent de Paul’s mission of promoting waste reduction and creating awareness to reuse through commercial activities and hands-on education. Organized by Chris Rummell, The St. Vincent de Paul of Alameda County Artist in Residence program provides local artists an on-site studio space and unlimited access to materials at their distribution center in East Oakland. From these materials, the artists create a body of work for a solo exhibition in the Gallery that highlights the intersections of waste, environment, and community.
“The Mothership Depot” by DeadEyes, 2013 Redux Studios & Gallery Artist in Residence will be on view through August 4.