Irot, “Can’t Help Evolution” at LeQuiVive Gallery

by admin on February 14, 2014

“Can’t Help Evolution,” street artist Irot’s solo show at LeQuiVive Gallery brings some of the most iconic public murals and street styles seen throughout Oakland and East Bay inside the gallery space. His recognizable long-beaked bird heads and wry political and economic commentary in his signature imagery comic book style are shown along the wall that begins with a series of delicate, monochromatic watercolors of mushrooms and arrowheads. Giving a sense of how the artist perceives the show, a cinder-block of the “T” in the title head “Can’t” of “Can’t Help Evolution” has crashed to the floor, changing the title from one of resignation to one of potential and opportunity. Through this gallery show, Irot’s artwork plays a large role in the conversation about the activation and public display of artwork, boundaries of where art belongs and what type, and the artist process of elevating previous goals and evolving the artistic practice.

Irot invites audiences to delve further into his artist identity, bringing to light multiple points of inspiration and influence through a unique perspective in the show akin to what the artist himself experiences as he becomes aware of the results of his process. Petroglyphs predominantly found in the Southwest implemented in the large mural near the entrance and the pair of horned lizards are blended seamlessly with a pop art style give a glimpse to intention. A Native of New Mexico, Irot’s interest in the ancient and public means of communication and expression exemplifies his strong attachment to his ancestry with the  Apache. Blending a comic book style (which influenced him in formative years) seen in a series of drawings also speaks to an interest to facilitate a public forum about local current affairs. Partially painted-over birds on the main wall may show the artist’s resilience, imperative for street artists. The destructed art piece is a part of the process creating public artwork on at times a hostile canvas.

Irot, “Can’t Help Evolution” will be at LeQuiVive Gallery 1525 Webster St., Oakland through February 28