Artist: Travis Lober
Exhibition: WORK: it’s a four letter word
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Dr. Maxine Merlino
About the Artist
Travis is a senior at CSULB and is graduating this spring semester, congrats! He graduating with the major of printmaking. He is a transfer from Nor Cal! At first, he got accepted into CSULB as a graphic design major, but he took an elective that was for printmaking and he loved printmaking a lot more. Therefore he changed his major from graphic design to printmaking. He came here for school because it’s a well known art school, which is never a surprise when any artist says that. It took Travis 3 years to make all of his works due to the long process of printmaking, which is amazing and his hard work paid off! Travis likes printmaking for its physicalness and it has more of a community feel, however, for graphic design it’s more on your own and you work on a computer alone, then just call it a day and go home afterwards.
When I first stepped in and saw the huge title and the sort of opening art work above the title, I knew exactly what it was going to be, but if I didn’t see any of those first, I think I wouldn’t know what the artwork would’ve been right off the bat. Some of the pieces almost look abstract to my eyes because they’re not straight up what they are and they have an angle to them. The working boots were pretty straight forward because I can point them out immediately, but as in for the tool belt piece, I didn’t know it was a tool belt until I asked Travis. They had similar colors as the boots so I thought it was maybe the back of the boots for some reason. Each piece had some sort of slight distortion to them and it that’s what makes it slightly unclear, but I could see the general idea of what each piece was.
I thought Travis’s artworks were really simplistic and sleek, but the process of printmaking is very long as he has told me so just because something looks easy, it usually isn’t. Each work has some sort of tool or necessity that is a part of “working” and I can tell that work seems very important to him. I have this thought/feeling that I get from his exhibition that work is universal, even though he portrays it through tools that are used mainly through on-hands activity like machinery and use a lot of labor. Maybe this type of “work” requires tools, working boots, and a tool belt, but other “work” can be anything else.
My Experience/ Synthesis
Overall, I liked how simple but meaningful Travis’s exhibition was. I don’t doubt that he took 3 years on this and I have no idea how printmaking works, but I know for sure it’s really pleasing to look at and it’s beautiful! When I really look up close to the work and look at it from the side too, printmaking seems so fascinating.
Thank you! Here are some photos!