As the focus of street artists like Robbie Conal and Shepard Fairey shifted from politics to commodity, a new generation of conceptualists sprang up from literally nowhere in the late '90s and early 21st century. The streets of L.A. were visited regularly by the post-and-paste works of Skullphone, Space Invader, 4eightyone, the band IMA Robot (in a slightly more craven way) and Buff Monster's happy little fanged scrubbing bubbles. Tonight's reception for Buff Monster's "Heavy Metal Ice Cream Smile" is the latest manifestation of the burgeoning Pop Surrealist movement; heavy metal, ice cream and the smiles of eternally pop Japan are Buff Monster's chief influences, shot through with neon curves and Day-Glo giddiness. The exhibition, accompanied by a custom giant/giant custom balloon installation, also marks the publication of Buff Monster's Life is Sweet: The Art of Buff Monster(MINDStyle Books).
Tuesdays-Saturdays. Starts: Sept. 5. Continues through Sept. 26, 2009