Patrick Martinez
American, born 1980
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Selected exhibitions
2018
Charlie James Gallery at EXPO CHICAGO 2018,
Charlie James Gallery
2017
Fictions,
The Studio Museum in Harlem
2015
IT'S A BEAUTIFUL DAY, I GUESS,
Subliminal Projects

“Game Recognize Game,” “Chinese Mexican Food,” “Trying to Make a Dollar out of 14 Cents”: These phrases, drawn from Patrick Martinez's neon sculptures, capture the artist's sensibility. It is one informed by the challenges, ethnic diversity, and hybrid nature of the urban environment, as well as the proliferation of messages we encounter there. Influenced by hip-hop culture and raised in Los Angeles, Martinez also works in painting, often incorporating portraits and still lifes into his neon pieces. What's the Problem? (2013) includes a human skull surrounded by junk food—a bag of Cheetos, a can of Coca-Cola, and some Skittles—painted on a clear acrylic with a neon border.