Wk 5 – Artist Conversation – Andre Ritter

IMG_3949.JPGThis week, the exhibit on display contained various works by a group of artists. Their group focused on metalwork sculptures. Some pieces such as the lanterns were functional, but there were also many wearable pieces. All of the jewelry were very dainty and detailed. I was greatly impressed considering that they were all made by metal.

Although I only interviewed one artist, Andre Ritter, I was thoroughly mesmerized by all of the art in the gallery. I wish I had the opportunity to talk to all of the artists.

Artist: Andre Ritter

Exhibition: Fuse: Join to Form;Single Entity

Media: Primarily aluminum

Gallery: Max. L Gatov Gallery East & West

Website or Instagram: N/A

Andre Ritter is a former student here at CSULB. He graduated last spring from the School of Arts with a major in metalwork. In his free time he likes to read comic books (he loves The Walking Dead) and plays volleyball in his free time. In addition he loves to visit other artists’ galleries for inspiration. He has an eight-year-old son and an older ten-year-old one. He’s working towards setting up an art program at his sons’ elementary school in partnership with the art education department. Ritter described his style as “tiki”, drawing inspiration from Polynesian islands in the mid-Pacific ocean. He told me that his style often includes over-decorating his pieces.

Andre Ritter’s primarily works with aluminum metal. He uses a water-jet to cut the metal rather than a laser because he finds that the jet leaves a cleaner edge. His pieces consist of many geometric patterns & straight lines, evident of his exotic art-style.

I was impressed by Ritter’s art because he somehow managed to make beautiful art pieces out of scraps of metal. Although his artwork is definitely elaborate and appealing to the eye, his pieces could also be used as statement decor which I think makes his art quite versatile. Personally speaking, I really appreciate how he manages to take the tiki-style and transform that into something suitable for modern-day implementation.

As someone who enjoys the islander-esque style, Andre Ritter’s art really appeals to me. It gives me a sense of nostalgia that reminds me of family vacations to tropical places. He lived in Hawaii for seven years so his flavor of art holds a significance to where he came from. I think that his distinct style holds an underlying potential to allow others to see the appeal of Polynesian culture.

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