Justin De Demko, curator and director of Castor Gallery, is proud to present Thinking About Everything, But Then Again, I Was Thinking About Nothing, a mixed-media installation by Tamara Santibañez. Located in Room #220, SPRING/BREAK Art Show, 4 Times Square (Entrance on 43rd Street) the installation will be on view February 28 (Preview Day) through March 6, 11am-6pm.
Santibañez is widely known for her innovative combination of Chicano imagery with fetish iconography, practicing her skills on human canvas by day, working alongside Scott Campbell at his legendary Saved Tattoo in Brooklyn.
In Thinking About Everything, Santibañez recreates a semi-autobiographical bedroom based on memory using ballpoint pen on paper, fabric and ceramics, to produce replicas of band posters, records, tapes, t-shirts, and punk accessories such as studded belts and bracelets. Santibañez aims to create a type of archaeological site where viewers are invited to investigate and mine for clues about the resident’s identity. The use of ballpoint pen is ubiquitous within Santibañez’s work as it is commonly one of the only forms of drawing implements made available for the incarcerated.
Utilizing the symbols of subculture affiliation, West Coast imagery and punk DIY ethos and verbiage, Santibañez presents correlations between Chicano prison ideograms with those of the cult of punk rock, the loud, fast-moving, and aggressive form of rock music. The title of the work is taken from the lyrics of a Suicidal Tendencies song "Institutionalized," referring to rebellion, frustrations and yearning for independence. Santibañez sites her own interest in punk as formative, becoming part of a tribe, a group with its own secret language and set of values.
ABOUT TAMARA SANTIBAÑEZ
Tamara Santibañez (b. 1987) is a multimedia artist with a degree in Fine Arts Printmaking, living and working in Brooklyn. Her work is rooted in subcultural semiotics and iconography, drawing from the worlds of BDSM and fetish, punk, Chicano art, and tattooing. She probes the weight objects hold as symbols and the ways in which style-based cultural signifiers function as shorthand for a coded communication, and asks the viewer to confront their own assumptions about gendered participants.