Today we’d like to introduce you to Ammon Rost.
Ammon, we’d love to hear your story and how you got to where you are today both personally and as an artist.
Japan in the 80’s was ripe in anime comic culture, with highly developed and stylized series like Dragon Ball just emerging.
The story lines were infused with Buddhist philosophy, like personal empowerment through hard work and searching inward.
My mother is Japanese, and I was born in Tokyo and was raised there until I was 11.
I was in the middle of this culture growing into a person. I think it was just really healthy creative fuel for a kid.
We’d love to hear more about your art. What do you do? Why? And what do you hope others will take away from your work?
I knew a girl who told me she braided her hair when she was nervous. I would watch her do this, making tiny blonde braids on the side of her face. I liked the poetry of how nervousness can manifest itself in craft of the braid pattern.
This idea lead me to draw a new symbol for a painting — a turtle shell with a braid coming out of its head hole. The image was about feeling isolated, hiding from the world.
My work is a meditation on romantic relationships and symbols that hold sentiment. Even if its temporary, I love relishing and playing with the power certain imagery can trigger and are able to unpack a set of emotions.
By bringing in a web of mysterious images like this into the work, the canvas becomes a poem. I don’t know what the poem means, but I know it always feels bittersweet.
What do you think about conditions for artists today? Has life become easier or harder for artists in recent years? What can cities like ours do to encourage and help art and artists thrive?
In Los Angeles, you just have to turn to a gallery guide app like curate la to find dozens of art openings each week competing for your attention. Blue chip galleries showing emerging and established artists to artist-run spaces that show art in an alternative context. Attending these openings, you end up hanging out talking to people and making new acquaintances. If I feel drawn to ask the artist about their intention, or technique, I do that. Learning about personal nuances within their art directly from them can be exciting. I love walking away from a show getting a taste for the artist’s energy first hand. I find that most artists that do great work are also darling people. Do you have to be a decent person to be a good artist? I’ve found there’s a correlation.
Do you have any events or exhibitions coming up? Where would one go to see more of your work? How can people support you and your artwork?
I will be showing in a group show at new image art in West Hollywood during January that I’m really excited about. They show a lot of artists I respect and honored to be included. Also, a show in Madrid late February and will be sharing details on my Instagram.
- Instagram: ammonrost