ARTIST TALK: Aaron Noble

at Tamarind Institute


October 3-14, 2016
Drop-in to see the artist at work

Guest artist Aaron Noble from Los Angeles, who has completed a site project for DECADE at Tamarind Institute, has created murals around the country and the globe. He is the cofounder of the Clarion Alley Mural Project in San Francisco. 516 ARTS connected with him for our exhibition Superheroes: Icons Good, Evil & Everything in Between (2011-2012), and brought him back to create the monumental mural Quantum Bridge on Warehouse 508 (2014-15). Noble says, “My core practice is large-scale, sitespecific wall painting with related works on paper and canvas. The work is a synthesis of three distinct practices: comics, collage, and muralism (both traditional and spraycan). The superhero comics of the sixties and seventies were my first aesthetic training ground.”

516 ARTS welcomed back Los Angeles based artist Aaron Noble to create Subterranean, a temporary mural on the wall of Tamarind Institute (facing Central Avenue behind glass). His work, which can also be seen with his past murals Quantum Bridge on Warehouse 508 at 508 1st Street NW in Downtown and The Cuckoo’s Nest, or, What You Hustlin’, Brother? at 515 Central Avenue NW in EDo), is based on cutting away the narrative and figurative content of superhero comics, and reconfiguring the component parts into autonomous abstract forms which express the deeper psychological poetry encoded within them. Noble says about Subterranean, “To escape the relentless blast of light and heat on Central Avenue, we are sometimes tempted to burrow into the earth, to go spelunking in the desert caves. We pass through magnetic fields, through strata of rock and mineral. Our thoughts turn inward as well. We think of the birth canal, the large intestine. We are inside ourselves. We begin to forget the shape of the outside world. The passage inverts itself. Now the inside is the outside and instead of us climbing through the channel, it is the channel which grips us, pushing us through the void.” 

This project is part of a collaboration with Tamarind Institute, for which Aaron Noble will return to Tamarind in 2017 for a printmaking residency.

Made possible with special support from Tamarind Institute