Week 7- Artist Conversation- Juliana Bustillo and Tidawhitney Lek

Artist: Juliana Bustillo and Tidawhitney Lek

Exhibition: Doodles in Space

Media: Paper and Wire

Gallery: Werby Gallery

Instagrams: @juliaanaa22b, @tidawhitney

This week at the galleries I got to talk to two different artists for the Doodles in Space exhibition, Juliana Bustillo and Tidawhitney Lek. They are both undergraduate students working towards their BFA in the Drawing and Painting program at the CSULB School of Art. Both of the artists plan on graduating soon and hope to go to graduate school somewhere on the east coast.

For their exhibition, they decided to do an entire installation, which took them almost three days to complete. They covered the gallery from wall to wall with black and white paper. They also had wire hanging down on one of the walls of the gallery. Even though paper was used throughout the entire room, it was used in so many different ways. On one corner it would be crumpled up in balls, then in another it was hanging from the ceiling with pieces cut out of it. Sometimes it was spread cleanly on the wall, while in others it was bunched up or thrown on the ground. The installation was set up in a way that really seemed to have no rhyme or reason to it, every wall was covered in paper that looked different than the wall next to it.

The installation’s title, Doodles in Space, reflects what the artists were trying to do with the paper. Doodles are mindless pictures that we draw when we just want to forget about everything around us and have a little fun, which was exactly their process when putting the gallery together. At first, they wanted to add lots of colors to the room, but then eventually decided to remove all colors entirely. This gave it a more simplistic feel to it, sort of like the feeling you get when you are just doodling on your notes in class. Tidawhitney spoke about her challenges as a child and how all she could afford was some paper and pencil to draw on. This inspired them to create one giant doodle made out of plain black and white paper.

To be quite honest, when I first walked into the gallery, I was a little confused as to what was going on all around me. But as the artists started to described their mindset behind all their work, it all started to make more sense. Even though I have never really been the best at drawing, it was always the thing that I resorted to when I didn’t want to think about the things going on around me. When life got too complicated and I was tired of getting the answers wrong in class, I would just tune everything else around me out and draw something simple like a dog on my notes. I thought it was really nice to see the artists make a giant doodle out of paper and bring something that we all did as children, or even now, to life.

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