We stopped by THIS Los Angeles for the opening reception of “Gold Coast” an exhibition of new works by San Francisco based artists Daniel Gibson and Mike Bertino.
Gold Coast is a conversation between the two of us about our experiences growing up, and living on the West Coast as adults, and specifically in California. It's a place where many people come to turn their dreams into reality, to become superstars, rock stars, tech stars, etc. etc. But it also has a vibe of eternal sunshine, pot smoking hippies, yoga, board shorts, hipsters, and lazy vacation style living. There is a vortex that happens between this kind of ambition and the illusion of indifferent coolness that bastardizes everything it comes in contact with. Underground music, cultural sub genres, and/or indigenous art are just fodder for a state of cultural irrelevance that is based on aesthetic appeal and a laissez faire type attitude toward creativity.
Danny and Mike met in San Diego, while attending a city college graphic design course. From what I gather, Mike sat up front and talked about art and other cool things, while Danny hid in the back just trying to get through class without anyone noticing. Before they met, Mike would walk into the coffee shop where Danny worked and “peddle his TRIGGER comics to the poor people sitting at peace enjoying a book.” Mike remembers the first time he saw Danny “Like a caricature of some high school stoner metal head burn-out, a Mexican Spicoli mashed with Slayer. I drew him in my sketchbook with a Megadeth shirt and a beany sporting a pot leaf patch on it. Years later I found the drawing and we had a good laugh about it.” When Danny moved to LA for art school, Mike soon followed, then he moved to San Francisco and so did Mike.
Following are a few images from the opening reception however this is definitely an exhibition you should stop by and check out for in person.
Daniel Gibson & Mike Bertino
THIS Los Angeles
Through September 21, 2012