We were able to stop by Apex‘s new show “Indigo” at White Walls Gallery in San Francisco this weekend. It was great to see a graffiti artist getting some love from a SF Gallery. I get tired of watching show after show of regurgitated street artists and Low Brow being shown over and over in SF’s top galleries. Not to knock all of them, but with so much talent to choose from internationally and locally, its hard to watch curators and gallery owners continue with the status quo. They continue to throw out household street art names as their worth declines in other parts of the world. Being able to take a chance on an up and coming artist like Apex or other rising graffiti artists, who are pushing real street art in my opinion remains a goal. I’ve known Apex personally for years, a distinguished artist taking his art and technique very serious. He has been able to transition very well into the fine art world. You can watch the video linked here to listen to his take on the shows concept. All 12 paintings were stretched on high end denim and used as the starting point as a canvas. I have seen paintings on denim before, but not like this. I feel he approached it from a very unique and original perspective, using the jeans seams at times to split the composition of the canvases. My favorite paintings were when he was able utilize his strengths as a colorist and bring bits and pieces of his superburners, yet not letting them overwhelm the work as a whole. Sometimes Burners belong on walls and Apex i think keyed on this, balancing the pieces well. Through his compositions and use of negative space he allowed the color and contrasting texture to really take effect fully. A great start for Apex, in a well put together show. Pictures courtesy of Mike Bam


“The idea for the work featured in Indigo came from APEX’s personal obsession with jeans, and his desire to experiment with denim as a fine art surface. After some trial and error, he developed a method for stretching denim over wood panel, in place of ordinary canvas, and completely fell in love with the look and feel of it. After this, APEX realized he wanted to do an entire gallery’s worth of his “super burners” all over denim. The aesthetics of the exhibition has roots deep in the graffiti movement, making reference to the self-painted denim jackets most inner city tag artists used to wear in the 1980’s.”