Monday, May 17, 2010

Pablo Naranjo: Illustrated Skateboards

Nice day was the consensus weather-wise. Sunny with breezes that by late noon sporadically turned to gusts that consistently gained in strength. I was chilling at the periphery of Creative Grove, taking in our Friday night art-fest. People flowed to and from the PATH or they waited on lines for the buses, or they meander around the vendor booths, lingered among the merchandise, chit-chatted with their fellow citizens. I watched the cloth of the canopies flap in the wind.

I noticed the images first before I noticed they were painted on skate boards. They seemed to be mix of comic book illustrations and graffiti art. The realism was edged by distortion. The artist is Pablo Naranjo, and his medium included not just Skate Boards but Tote Bags, T-shirts and something called Griptape. I like this one image of a sort of idealized female form, sort of feverish adolescent male fantasy pin-up – lightening bolts emanated from her. The blend of style resembled cartoons, their sense of humor k was refreshing. I liked the idea too, that even a surface as mundane and taken for granted, like a skate board or a tote bag, could be a vessel for art. I suppose a sense of humor in the imagery enables that concept to work.

He told me it was his first time exhibiting at Creative Grove. The DJ spun mellow techno beats; children had the hula hoops out. A robust gust of wind plowed through, some of the vendors scrambled to hold their art down.

Pablo’s merchandise was strapped safely to the table.

Pablo calls himself a freelance illustrator. His website is:

And his email address is:

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