What's the future of printing? Once nostalgic celebration of craft diminishes, will there be something to take place that is of the moment (and potentially of the future)? Internationally renowned, Barcelona-based tattoo artist Jondix has some ideas.
I never expected to become mainstream. It makes me try new things and methods. — Jondix
Aeons-Tulpa, the artist's first solo show and the inaugural showing in Raking Lights' print exhibition series, includes 10 original works—each a futuristic version of the traditional wood block. Originally prepared with black ink on drafting film, the drawings are then scanned and laser-etched into a brushed gold substrate. Nine of these are installed at Los Angeles' Against the Stream Buddhist Meditation Society in rows and columns of three to create a square, with the tenth print placed to the side. The configuration represents Jondix's own metaphysical being. Deities and ritual objects combine with allusions to personal fantasy and science fiction in the artist's signature Eastern-influenced patterning.
In preparation for the opening, Complex caught up with Jondix to find out more about his artistic training and his thoughts on current tattoo trends.
5 questions with Jondix:
How did you start as an artist? Did you train? Were you apprenticed in any medium besides tattooing?
I studied architecture for 7 years, so technical drawing was daily routine. Before, when I was a kid, I had a very good art teacher at school called Emil Troeger and he had a big impact on me. But mostly, I learned from books.
Aeons-Tulpa is your first solo exhibition. What is the inspiration and how does working off the body change how you think about art?
I could say I tattoo and paint 50% each. Art is a big word, I don't think that's art at all…more like lowbrow art maybe, not sure, just creations from my subconscious. Sometimes I paint other stuff that maybe is art, but I'm not showing it to anybody.
You've obviously been making art on paper (and in print) for some time. Why is now the time for an exhibition?
This is something unique I've never seen before and that's why I accepted to exhibit. I've never seen this kind of art laser cut on metal plates before. Looks like decoration from DUNE.
What influences you?
The movie Logan's Run was the first time I went to the cinema and probably influenced me more than anything else.
What are your thoughts on the growth of blackwork and dotwork tattoos over the last 5 years? Did you expect the styles to filter into mainstream trends?
I don't like it, to be honest. The new generation is just repeating and copying everything we did before. I'm waiting for something original, but they don't even know who are the pioneers, like Xed Lehead, are. At the end I don't really care, because everything follows a natural curse for some reason we don't understand. I never expected to become mainstream, but that makes me not like it, and makes me try new things and methods.
Aeons-Tulpa exhibition opens this Saturday, April 13, and runs for one year. Special events and viewings will take place throughout the run of the installation.
Against the Stream
4300 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA