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Pontiac artist connects with other local artists to create Artopia: Pontiac's ART OASIS.

Artopia: Pontiac's art oasis is friday july 22, 2022. from 8pm-12pm at the pontiac creative arts center. The aRtopia will be showcasing art from Amy "a1" Flores, Devan Green, Bryan Gower, Na'Jeray "Lint Pocket" Elam, Oshun Williams, Zach Curtis, Ryan Tavarez, and Ivan Quinones ii. Local artist Dame Black Will also be performing live. entree fee is $10. Must be 21 years or older to enter.

YTDBD got a chance to interview The organizer Ivan Quinones ii.

YTDBD: Can you tell us a bit about your background?

IVAN: "I'm a Pontiac native, born and raised. A Self taught artist with no training. Definitely a God-given talent. As a kid, I always had a desire to create. I would trace coloring books and draw the cartoons, putting my own style on them.

As I got older, I somewhat lost the motivation to create. Every now and then, I would take advantage of opportunities to tap back into it.

When COVID hit in 2020, and we were forced to quarantine, I took advantage of the time and tapped back into it. I started pushing myself beyond my comfort zone. I began picking up commission work that kept growing and growing. This fueled my passion again. The increase in business led me to open my own studio."

YTDBD: What inspired ARTOPIA: Pontiac's Art Oasis?

IVAN: "The idea for ARTOPIA: Pontiac's Art Oasis came after connecting with other artists here in the city. Seeing the amount of unsung talent amongst the local artists and the lack of opportunities given here in the city for exposure, I had to do something. I had to create a way to build an art scene here in Pontiac.

ARTOPIA is an exhibition that showcases the work of selected local artists, infused with an entertaining environment. An oasis, because it's here today, gone tomorrow, meaning there's no central location for it. It can be anywhere. My vision is to keep it circulating throughout the city, using different businesses as hosts, to bring in more of the community support to the businesses as well.

This is just the beginning. There are so many artists that I look forward to expose via showcasing them in ARTOPIA. "

YTDBD: Where can people find you and get more information about the Pontiac Art Oasis?

IVAN: For more info, you can like and follow El Piqasso Studio on FB and @elpiqasso on IG. Also like and follow ARTOPIA: Pontiac's Art Oasis on FB and IG.

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