By Zazil Farfan
Images Courtesy of the Artists
This week I got to delve into the brains of EYESORE and Darcy Rosenberger, who will be showing their work in a collaborative exhibit, “Moving Away,” this Friday at Catacomb (2315 Commerce St., Studio 7). The show is called Moving Away, as both artists diverge from their former aesthetic styles. Darcy confirms our thoughts that “EYESORE is pretty much a Houston icon at this point. He’s one of the people that has stuck it out, worked hard for a long time, and proven that it could be done.” Rosenberger’s own work leaves no room for viewers to be unengaged as each piece demands a deeper look from audiences.
We had a brief chat with EYESORE and Darcy about their views on their art and what to expect from the show this weekend:
noun: eyesore; plural noun: eyesores
a thing that is very ugly, especially a building that disfigures a landscape.
monstrosity, blot (on the landscape), mess, scar, blight, disfigurement, blemish, ugly sight
“what’s left of the old factory is a danger and an eyesore”
FPH: Do you agree or disagree with this dictionary definition of “eyesore?” What does “eyesore” mean to you?
EYESORE: I agree with the definition, but beauty/ugly is in eye of the beholder. I think that’s what I was trying to convey when I picked that name long ago.
FPH: Do you think the characters that regularly occur in your work would agree with you on this topic?
EYESORE: The themes and characters I choose are a direct result of what I feel needs to be perceived by the viewer; U
FPH: How do you approach a collaborative effort such as Moving Away? Do you work with a concrete end in mind for viewers or would you say that they will be left with a lingering aftertaste – thoughts to reminisce upon and digest?
EYESORE: “Moving Away” is a way for me to end one chapter and start a new one.The style and time in which these pieces were drawn and created has already passed and my thoughts are moving forward in a new and different direction. I hope that viewers see the images, feel the show, and remember that time and place the work was a part of their lives, in the city of Houston’s ever changing landscape .
FPH: I saw a picture on Catacomb’s Instagram of some masks that will be used this weekend. What purpose do they serve? Do you have any other surprises in store?
EYESORE: Those masks were my daughter’s idea! It was fun little art project to work on. I want everyone who comes out to the show to enjoy themselves and leave with something. We also plan on raffling off some very limited edition prints.
FPH: What led to this collaboration with Darcy?
EYESORE: I attended a show she put together a few summers ago. I admired her attention to detail and illustration style, and I thought it would be interesting to work together.
FPH: I remember finding myself captivated by your piece “Asli” when it was on display at HCC a few years ago. I recall that it gave me a sense of relief. In a way, it refused to let me pass by without delving in further. I would make a point of going to the gallery after my classes to take another peek at your work. It’s been a few years since then, but I still find that I’m captivated in the same way when looking at your more recent pieces. Can you tell us how you’ve seen your work grow in the past five years?
Darcy: It has definitely become more of a conscious mediation than it was five years ago. Since I spend so much time on the pieces in this meditative process, they are more complex and detailed. I’ve broadened my knowledge of new tools, and this has helped me make more complex sculptural work. I hit a wall maybe two years ago and just had to decide to surrender myself to the work and stop trying to pull away in attempts to have a “better” life. This made everything much smoother and made the work come around faster.
FPH: What are your expectations for the next five years?
Darcy: I try to be open and listen to what life tells me to do, so there is a huge chasm of chaos where that expectation would be. I will definitely keep finding ways to challenge myself, but whatever happens will form by interest, resourcefulness, environment, and chance.
FPH: Are you working on any projects aside from “Moving Away” at the moment?
Darcy: Yes, I am in a band called Mouthing with Ryan Valadez, Keegan Daleeo, and Dakota Garrot. I have no musical background, so it was really unexpected to be asked to be a part of the project and play alongside people that are so skilled and have been musicians for so long. We had no idea if it would work out or not, but everything fell into place really naturally, somehow. They are teaching me a lot.
FPH: With all the show has to offer, what do you want the audience to take from it? What will viewers have to bring to the table to have a better understanding of the artwork?
Darcy: I’m not demanding anything from anyone. If the work resonates with them, great; some communication has happened – some transference of emotion, thought, or soul. If it doesn’t, then it just isn’t right for them and that is fine, too. They don’t need anything they don’t already have in order to understand the art. I want to make art that is inclusive and accessible.
FPH: What led the two of you to name the show “Moving Away?”
Darcy: It was EYESORE’s idea, but it was really weird because I was thinking about moving at the time and hadn’t mentioned it to anyone. ESP type shit.
FPH: Final question, can we expect more collaborations from you and EYESORE any time soon?
Get there early to score the best of the art there. Not only will you have the opportunity to purchase art from two of the most esteemed creators in Houston, but EYESORE has revealed that they will be raffling away a handful of very limited silver on white screenprints, all signed by the artist himself. The first 50-60 people through the store will be given a ticket to hold on to until the winner is announced at 9pm, AND his adorable daughter helped him make some badass cast masks for everyone to take home.
EYESORE has played his part as a notable figure in the Houston art scene for about a decade; having worked with the likes of illustrator Daniel “SAW BLADE” Shaw and poster legend Jermaine Rogers, as well as some of his close friends like ACK!, GIVE UP, Future Death, and Holy Money. His work has been seen throughout the greater Houston area — on the streets and in both commercial and academic galleries; he’s made a few appearances at FPSF, and has been commissioned for many a poster, t-shirt, and cassette tape design.
Rosenberger is a young, emerging Houston artist with plenty on her plate, as well. She graduated with a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in sculpture, having studied visual art at the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts prior to that. Her art has been shown in the Williamsburg Art and Historical Center in Brooklyn, The Museum of Human Achievement in Austin, the Contemporary Arts Museum of Houston, Fresh Arts, Box13 Art Space, Lawndale Arts Center, The Foundry, Blaffer Art Museum, the Matchbox Gallery at Rice University… the list goes on.