1xRUN Thru Interview
Greet Them With Fire by Steven Lopez
1xRun: Tell us a little bit about this piece, is the original still for sale?
Steven Lopez: This studio painting was part of my solo show at Gauntlet Gallery this year. I feel this piece culminates my exercises in lighting and texture. The elephant was really fun to work with. Especially when I embellished him with Quetzal type feathers. That’s why this painting has emotional attachment to me. It combines a story of adversity along with my penchant to push my artistic boundaries.
1xRun: When was this piece drawn and created ? What materials were used?
Steven Lopez: The idea was first drawn in late 2013 and painted February 2014. I’ve been working with Nova Color acrylics for many years now. I love the viscosity and how it flows on the canvas. I also use floetrol to help extend my dry time.1xRun: Tell us how the idea and execution came about?
Steven Lopez: I’ve had a few scrapes and bruises over the years to help with the idea. It started out as a conversation with myself
that I had over and over again. This helped me understand the possibilities of that conversation and how to relay it visually. If I showed you the first sketch you’d laugh if you didn’t know what the final draft looked like. But that’s how it started. drawing and redrawing a many times over until it felt right.
1xRun: How long did the piece take?
Steven Lopez: I know I spent four weeks on this painting. slept during the day and painted through the night.
1xRun: What is unique about this piece?
Steven Lopez: I’ve never painted an elephant before this piece. but I saw it as an opportunity to polish my lighting skills and experiment a little more with texture. Although this painting is colorful the storyline serves a grittier tale…something that I haven’t done with my polymorphic style.
1xRun: Why should people buy this print?
Steven Lopez: I’m honored that people buy my work. The work you buy today helps me make more in the future. It matters to me that it speaks to you. I feel that if it conjures up an emotional response then it was meant for you.
1xRun: Describe this piece in one gut reaction word.
Steven Lopez: Paramount.
1xRun: When did you first start making art? What was your first piece?
Steven Lopez: I’ve always been into art ever since I was a kid. If it wasn’t for graffiti I probably wouldn’t be where I’m today. So I would have to say I got into art whenI was in the seventh grade. On a wall somewhere long ago. I couldn’t even tell you what it was.
1xRun: What artists inspired you early on? What artists inspire you now?
Steven Lopez: I loved Bill Waterson’s imagination and inking. That guy could do a lot with three panels. While I was growing up in Los Angeles there was the graffiti artist, Hex TGO. What that guy did with a spray can in the 80’s was light years ahead. What I remember most about his work was his use of color. It boggled my mind because it didn’t make sense in my head but there it was on the wall. In a way my coloring style is inspired by him. As of late it has I have really been impressed with Syd Mead’s futuristic style because it is so clean. His use of industrial design and mechanics is top notch. Francoise Nielly color use is out of this world and I love how she wields her palette knife. It’s like organized chaos.
1xRun: Do you listen to music while you work? If so what?
Steven Lopez: Depending on what type of mood I’m in, I’ll put on some jazz, blues or electronic/downtempo. Sometimes, I’ll put a documentary on or a movie. What I won’t do is put on a movie that I haven’t seen (because I’ll end up paying attention to it if it’s good). It always has to be something that I’ve seen before. I recently bought Mike Tyson’s audiobook. If you want to hear some crazy stories while painting, put that on.
1xRun: If you could collaborate with any living artist who would it be and why? Any deceased artists?
Steven Lopez: I’d love to work with Syd Mead. That guys work is super-clean. The way he describes industrial design is breathtaking. For the latter, if I could do a mural collaboration with David Siquieros that would be fresh. I love how he shows strength in the figure. The stories he paints are rich in culture.
1xRun: Any big shows or events coming up that you’d like to share?
Steven Lopez: I just wrapped up two shows in San Francisco, one at Old Crow and the other at Gauntlet. Those kept me pretty busy, and now I’m focusing on my next solo show at Jupiter Gallery
1xRun: Where else can people find you?
Steven Lopez: – Website –