Wk9-Artist Conversation-Daniel Bonilla-Vera

Exhibition Information

Artist: Daniel Bonilla-Vera, Dalia Banuelos

Exhibition: Infraction

Media: Photographs, yarn, clothes

Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Dr. Maxine Merlino Gallery

Website: dbvphotography.com

Instagram: @dbvqp, @deliaeffect

About the Artist

Daniel Bonilla-Vera and Dalia Banuelos are both students at the California State University of Long Beach. Unfortunately, Dalia was not at the Art gallery to talk, so this essay will mainly focus on Daniel and his views. Daniel, originally from the Central Valley, is currently a senior at CSULB trying to pursue his undergraduate degree. Daniel is a Studio Arts major, although that is not what he wants to do. Back in high school, Daniel enjoyed both music and photography. That being said, those were the two careers in which he could choose from. Although enjoying both, Daniel decided to try and pursue photography. In high school, he took a photography class which caused him to fall in love with it. Unfortunately, for both Dalia and Daniel, their applications were rejected by CSULB’s photography program. For Dalia, it will have been her 2nd rejection, meaning she cannot apply again. However, for Daniel, there is still hope as he has one more chance to pursue his dreams.

Formal Analysis

When first walking into the room, you will probably notice a lot of pictures and yarn. There are pictures all over the walls, with black yarn strung up around half of the room. According to Daniel, one side of the room contains his photographs, while the other contains Dalia’s, with both having pictures at the end of the room. In one corner, you also see a trashcan with photos inside of it. At the end of the room on the floor, there are also what seem to be like two people. The people are not real, but whatever they are, they are wearing real clothes. One of them is lying in a little corner, while the other is on their knees in the center of the room. Above them, there are pictures hanging off of the yarn and along the walls. The room is also very dark, so it gives kind of a depressing mood.

Content Analysis

The title of the gallery is Infraction, which has the definition of disregarding laws and rules. In a way, this gallery is Daniel and Dalia’s attempt at showing their disregard and frustration towards CSULB as an institution. The two bodies in the gallery represent both Daniel and Dalia. All of the photographs in this gallery were their rejected works, which is interconnected with the black yarn. The yarn is that color because Dalia likes black, but it also adds to the overall atmosphere of frustration and negativity. If you were to follow the yarn, you would realize that only one whole string is used. You would also be able to see that it ends up in the trashcan. This symbolizes how all of the art and photographs were meant to be in the trash, according to the institution.

My Experience

When I first walked into the gallery, I was honestly a little weirded out by how the room felt. I had no idea what any of it meant. After listening to Daniel speak and explain the thought behind the whole thing though, it truly did not seem weird at all. What Daniel and Dalia felt is what I think most of us have felt at some time in our lives. Frustration and anger is a hard thing to get away from once it hits you. Through the gallery and hearing Daniel speak, people can truly sympathize with what he has to say and the meaning behind his art. Daniel and Dalia both do a wonderful job on constructing a piece of art that conveys their emotions in a way that other people can appreciate and relate to.

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