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Time Zoned in California Sweetness The Opening of Life Of Carlos Tolentino/Contemporary Art Exhibit

Imagine this:

Imagine if the stars and planets agreed to create a time zone layered with the sweetness of California heat, vibrancy, and creativity– That illustrates the opening night of "The Life of Carlos Tolentino."

Flyer courtesy of Carlos Tolentino Aguilar @carlostolentino13

Located at the one and only Gallery 13, "The Life of Carlos Tolentino" showcased a collection of mixed media and works of novel style. On opening night, Tolentino stated, "It is a beautiful day! I love it. It is overwhelming seeing all that came to check out my artwork." With a galactic west coast feel, "The Life of Carlos Tolentino" featured illustrations of El Chavo, Biggie Smalls, Muhammad Ali, and self-portraits of Carlos and his father. Mediums included bleach on canvas, charcoal, acrylic, cardboard, and even skateboards!

Photos taken by FAYNC MAG, SWT

Carlos said, "I started some of these pieces about five or six years ago. It has been a long journey, and many of these pieces were completed these last couple of months." Expressively, "The Life of Carlos Tolentino" feels like a puzzle, and the pieces have fallen beautifully into place. Carlos responded, "It is like a puzzle. Sometimes artists get discouraged because they don't finish a piece. But I've always said, if you can't finish it now, don't rush it. You have to put it aside and come back to it. It can be a month, a year, or two years but when you are ready to finish that piece, you are going to finish it."

The conversation blossomed in agreeance; Art will always speak to you. Carlos said, "Yes, it will. Everything speaks. Everything in life, even having this conversation with you right now, everything, the day-to-day, it speaks. Everything is interconnected."

As we looked around, Gallery 13 had transformed into a space of diverse connection. The ambiance channeled a smooth and vibrant aura.

Favorite Piece of The Night – American Dream

Carlos speaks about his favorite piece from "The Life of Carlos Tolentino"

"Ahhh man, honestly… the one I just finished, the portrait of my dad, titled American Dream, is my favorite piece of the night. That's the one in front of the green couch. It means a lot. It means a lot to him. It means a lot to us. There was so much thought behind it. When he immigrated to this country in 95, that moment changed our lives forever. Ya know? If it weren't for him, I wouldn't be here. My circumstances wouldn't be the same. Opportunities wouldn't be the same. I don't believe I could have focused as much on art as I do now if it wasn't for his decision." Carlos's speech slowed down as the breeze calmed the air. He continued, "So you know, it meant a lot to have him in this show and just to thank him. Because of him, I am here." -Carlos Tolentino

Photos taken by FAYNC MAG, SWT

The American Dream portrait depicts a honey sunset lying softly on a west coast skyline. His father, balancing smoothly against a blue lowrider, looks deeply into the eye of the viewer. Carlos said, "The portrait symbolizes the American dream. It is a photo he took in 96 with a motorsports car; you know that was a dream. When you're an adult, you want that sports car, that two-sitter. My dad is super proud of that photo. The only thing I changed was the landscape to the beautiful horizon in California. That was what my dad was looking for, and that is what he gave us."

Carlos finished, "But you know that's my favorite piece for now. Tomorrow when I start a new one, that will be my favorite one!” We laughed and let the evening of summer kiss us all.

Video created by FAYNC MAG, Carla West and Zairis Miles

Beautiful people, it's been real! You already know it's ya girl, SWT, here to keep you updated with the real, the beautiful, and the hottest talk of the Ville. Thanks for vibing with FAYNCMAG! Big shout out to Carlos Tolentino and his exhibit "The Life of Carlos Tolentino," displaying June 23rd, 2023, through July 23rd, 2023, at Gallery 13. Be sure to stop by and check it out!

Time Zoned in California Sweetness

The Opening of Life Of Carlos Tolentino / Contemporary Art Exhibit


Writer + Editor

FAYNC Magazine

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