Arts » Arts Stories & Interviews

Presa House Gallery Brings Together San Antonio's Joe De La Cruz, Corpus Christi's Ashley Thomas in New Exhibition

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JOE DE LA CRUZ
  • Joe De La Cruz
October at Southtown favorite Presa House sees the blending of works by San Antonio’s own Joe De La Cruz and Corpus Christi-based Ashley Thomas — two like-minded artists who were admittedly “unfamiliar with each other’s work” but smartly paired by the homey gallery based on “undeniable similarities in style, content and execution.”

A steadfast presence on the local gallery scene who’s also shown at the McNay Art Museum and worked as an independent art handler since 2012, De La Cruz spins melancholy magic with his stark and nearly photo-realistic graphite renderings that celebrate everyday objects ranging from 1990s-era band T-shirts to vinyl LPs and veladoras. His new body of work “Under Pressure” comprises drawings designed to serve as “nostalgic eulogies of practical relics, and iconic indicators of identity and culture just before the inception of the digital age.”

Similarly inspired by her South Texas upbringing in the ’80s and ’90s as well as the poetics of “overlooked and often under-appreciated details,” Thomas — who has exhibited in art meccas ranging from Brooklyn to Marfa — also employs graphite to celebrate and reframe seemingly mundane subjects. Nodding to the visual hallmarks of artistic and domestic work along with Presa House’s past life as a residence, her “Labor of Love” combines drawings of unsung staples, household wares and tools of the trade.

Free, opening reception 6-11pm Fri Oct 5, on view by appointment through Oct. 27, Presa House Gallery, 725 S. Presa St., (210) 913-5842, presahouse.com.
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