Words by Mandy Baca
Sex, drugs, rock ‘n’ roll, hip-hop, and more drugs. It’s the life of an artist. And don’t expect anything less of Kenton Parker. Le Sandwicherie and King of Diamonds are just some of the places Parker calls home when in his second city of Miami. Brutally honest and a wild child, the artist’s creativity allows for a process with no limitations. In these times of commercialism, it’s difficult to find art that speaks so much of the time, yet doesn’t cater to commercialism.
A curated exhibition of Kenton Parker’s latest work, It Takes All This to be Me, debuts at Primary Flight October 8 during the Second Saturday Art Walk. Primary Flight rarely disappoints and definitely promises a show unlike any other this month.
I caught up with Director of Operations Chris Oh in between installations to talk about the upcoming exhibition. In his words, “We only do projects that we like, that inspire us. We only do exhibits that we (as viewers) would like to see.” Just days before the opening, BooksIIII Bischof, Typoe, and Chris Oh are still sorting through the 700 plus pieces from L.A. Each is representative of the artist’s life and activities which resonate heavily with pop and American culture.
The show will not feature 700 items. Oh still couldn’t tell me exactly how many works will be displayed since they’ll probably be curating until one minute before opening. He did though promise two things: everything will have a purpose, and the taco/ice cream/graffiti truck will be there. Well, it’s already here. The truck was shipped from L.A. in pieces and is being reconstructed as I write this.
When asked for a comparison, Parker and another contemporary artist, Oh laughed, “He’s matchless.”
Want to get inside the head of the artist? That’s the point of the whole exhibition. Kenton Parker is a kooky guy. You may not get it. You may not like it. The show speaks to the inner creative or the inner persona inside of all of us. It asks us to concentrate more on each piece of art, its position, and its location.
BookIIII Bischof, Typoe, and Chris Oh are mad geniuses. Each work lets you deeper inside the head of Parker, like Being John Malcovich deep, exposing his most inner madnesses and darknesses, but also revealing that he’s just like us. He does the normal things that we all do, like going to the supermarket or the bank.
Art, like a time machine, serves to capture a still frame of the time. The sign of our times can be seen blatantly in his art, our nostalgia for the past with his allusions to the ’50’s, the importance of sex, honesty, and beautiful harshness, technology is represented by his various mediums, and novelty of the taco/ice cream/graffiti hybrid is just the classic example of our need, not want, for more, more, more – now, now, now.
And you read it here first: because of logistical issues, they won’t be serving tacos out of the taco/ice cream/graffiti truck hybrid, but the crew is considering opening a permanent taco stand in Wynwood unlike anything seen in Miami. Taco/graffiti/ice cream permanent stand? Mmhhh, we’re down!