| Art |

23. Freegums

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In honor of our Artopia party on February 10, Cultist proudly presents "100 Creatives," where we feature Miami's cultural superheroes in random order. Have suggestions for future profiles? Email cultist@miaminewtimes.com with the whos and whys.
23.  Freegums

Alvaro Ilizarbe wants to transport you into another dimension through his eye-crossing work. The elaborate graphic designs can seem simply ornate, but a closer looks reveals the complexity and hardwork that Ilizarbe puts into every piece.

Under his moniker, Freegums, he's straddles the line between the high-brow and low-brow. His pieces can be found hung in galleries, but you can also wear them thanks to his continuous line of apparel. Even better are the limited-edition knick-knacks he designs, like the shot glass he made in honor of Art Basel in 2009 for the perennial hipster party Poplife.

But commercial work aside, his work through the traditional confines of the gallery space are equally as impressive. His first solo exhibition, "Museum Quality" at the Bas Fischer Invitational in 2008 catapulted him instantly into the local art consortium's consciousness. It featured a mix of imagery right out of a mall-quality music video and a do-it-yourself T-shirt design. Subsequent shows in San Francisco and L.A. have only solidified what we already know: Freegums kicks ass.

1. List five things that inspire you.

1. Jen Stark
2. My family and friends
3. Comic book art
4. Pattern design from all parts of the world, e.g. Japan, India, Islamic...
5. Sci-fi illustration

2. What was your last big project?

Celestial Beings, a solo show I had last year in LA at HVW8 gallery. For this show I painted large wooden pieces portraying powerful forces that lie in the space around us. With a variety of finely painted lines I drew upon space and shapes to transform the gallery into a portal to a parallel dimension. I created a pattern that was wheat-pasted onto the walls and floor, creating a different dimension. Once you walked in you felt like you where in a different world.

3. What's your next big project?

I have a solo show in Toronto at Narwhal Art Projects in May. Jen will also have a solo show opening that same weekend so we are tag teaming Toronto. Just in time for when the good weather rolls in. For this show I'm taking a step further into transforming the space into a parallel dimension.

4. Why do you do what you do?

It keeps me sane. Drawing and painting is very therapeutic for me. I zone out and it's very relaxing. All my senses are focused on what my hand is doing, I become one with the pencil, pen, or brush.

5. What's something you want Miami to know about you?

I love when people are having fun and are engaging others/strangers in it.

What's something you don't want Miami to know about you?

I don't really like to share my food, but I do anyways. (I have a big appetite.)

The Creatives so far:

24. Aurora Natrix
25. Gean Moreno
26. Yaddyra Peralta
27. Barron Sherer

28. Brigid Baker
29. Daniel Fila
30. McLaine Oberhellmann
31. Fro Rojas
32. Annie Hollingsworth
33. Preston Allen
34. Cristina Molina
35. David Josef Tamargo
36. Jillian Mayer

37. Alfonso Vega
38. Natasha Lopez de Victoria
39. Aholsniffsglue

40. Heather Maloney
41. Jorge Rubiera
42. Elaine Lancaster
43. Nick Duckart
44. Danielle Estefan
45. John Dufresne

46. Monica Lopez de Victoria
47. Bill Bilowit
48. Alette Simmons-Jimenez
49. Tawnie Silva
50. Ginger Bardot
51. Jonathan David Kane
52. Naomi Fisher
53. Rocky Grimes

54. Teresa Barcelo
55. Paul Tei
56. Lee Materazzi


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