Joey Enriquez: 120° Farenheit
November 13, 2019 - February 2, 2020
Joey Enriquez: 120° Fahrenheit
On View November 13, 2019 – February 2, 2020
Art Lab Gallery, Building W-16
Exhibition Reception: January 11, 2020, 6 – 8 p.m.
120° F is a colloquial threshold for fathoming heat in the Mojave Desert. Almost unbelievable and seemingly distant, the hellish environment is something spoken about, pondered on, and exotified by media but not always deeply experienced or seen. The glass sculpture ”120° Fahrenheit” examines the preservation of endangered plant life in a condensed environment–specifically the Panamint daisy, sticky buckwheat, and Lane Mountain milkvetch—in the Mojave Desert and utilize the detached, unappreciative perspective of the desert that collective society has. Matching the human-induced consequences of the climate crisis, the glassification of these plants repurposes natural processes, like petrifaction and desertification, that leave behind skeletons and husks of previously biotic forms. The likenesses that the glass provides is a close, but not perfect or exact, physical representation of the actual, living plants—something that might have to suffice for botanical and cultural purposes if they go extinct.
Joey Enriquez makes digital art, photography, printmaking and, more recently, glass work. Originally from Southern California, he pursued graphic design and marketing. In 2017, he transitioned from graphic design to fine art in order to seek new ways to combine his own perspective with social practice, public engagement, and media literacy. His art and design forms communities for people who are marginalized or need to be empowered. His work ranges from socio-political memes of Gen Z culture to photographic and linoleum block prints of the desert environment to data visualization of public transit. Enriquez earned his B.A. in Art–Design from California Lutheran University in 2018 and is currently studying for his M.F.A. in Fine Arts from the George Washington University in Washington, D.C.