Patrick Martinez juxtaposes art and life with neon signs in an ordinary California grocery store.
Known for his ironic neon signage, Los Angeles artist Patrick Martinez recently showcased some works in an unlikely location. Amid aisles of prepackaged food, beer, and lotto ticket machines at the El Tapatio Market in Bell Gardens, California, hung signs such as ‘Thugs Need Hugs Daily,’ blending in (at least on first glance) seamlessly with the store. The ‘lowbrow’ setting serves to inspire other creators to consider art outside the gallery by juxtaposing it with the everyday.
But despite the signs’ wit and pop cultural relevancy, Martinez says they don’t convey any sort of social agenda. In a 2012 interview with La Taco, he explained:
[The signs are] just ideas and concepts I have. They are executed thoughts and observations in the visual form, some from my conscious some from my subconscious. My art represents the Los Angeles landscape and the people in it.
See for yourself below: