The occult has long inspired painters, from Lucien Freud's early portraits of Jonathan Lipnicki as The Littlest Vampire to Bob Ross using skull fragments instead of a palette knife. For his latest series of canvases, South Florida-based artist Estudiomau has turned to tarot cards as both muse and subject matter. The 22 oversized card paintings in acrylic will be on display upstairs in The Cocktail Collection at Tobacco Road starting at this Thursday night's opening party.
"Traditional tarot cards are Eurocentric in their style," Estudiomau explains. "So the first thing I did was interpret them into my style and then recast it as Afro-Caribbean, with Miami colors while staying true to the meaning of the card."
His version of the cards measure two feet by three feet and will allow attendees to gravitate toward the cards that contain special meaning for them. Estudiomau will switch up the installation over the weeks of his show, so as to not influence readings by hanging The Stinky Ghost next to the toilets or The Creep behind the guy innocently applying mascara to his chest hair. If it turns out that your future is going to be kind of rough, fortunately, there will be discounted drinks available, although maybe all that cheap booze will be part of why the future hurts so much. Only the cards know.
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Yes, yes, you say to the Venezuelan pickling heir trying to impress you with shoddy knowledge of brine, that is very interesting. And over his shoulder, Death: a painting of the grim reaper. You can't stop looking. Maybe the card means you are about to die. Or maybe that this summer will be marked by expectations of unrealistic body types, when even a successful businesswoman -- without a scrap of skin on her bones -- feels pressure to smile constantly while covering up in a baggy black cloak. But it's definitely one of those two on its way (death, or low self-esteem) and the only way to find out which is to head to Tobacco Road on Thursday.
Your future begins at 7 p.m. and ends at 2 a.m. For more art, visit estudiomau.com and to speak with a cocktail, call 305-374-1198.