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Joe Mangrum
New York, NY
Neighborhood: Gowanus



ARTIST STATEMENT: Statement My paintings are a visual rebellion of the urban grid. It’s my philosophy that we are all unknowingly and psychologically programed by this system, a dominating force that efficiently partitions the globe into quantifiable sections of space and time, divided by minutes and seconds. It is ultimately out of sync with the natural world, seasonal cycles and lunar tides. The result is a society divided from nature and compartmentalized into definable groups, disconnected physically, and spiritually from the whole. I work to reclaim these divisions by creating sand paintings, in organic shapes, interconnecting the fragments and acting as a catalyst for a synthesis, again. For me this is a vital process of affirming life   Each painting  is spontaneously improvised, using colorful sand, poured directly from my hand. In the process of creation, I whisk a mash-up of visual cues, inspired by ancient traditions synced up with a rhythm of animation. In addition, these forms are mixed with an urban free-style and combined with bright “Pop” colors. My paintings are influenced by an abundant world of undersea creatures, carnivorous plants charged with electrical impulses, botanical, animal and cross-cultural metaphors from many years of travels around the world.  Visually, I combine elements from contemporary art, culture and technology to find the common ground from which to communicate our collective interdependence, as we are moving into the 21st century. My art is about interconnectivity and co-existence with the natural order of life and politically challenging the existing order beliefs, in a run-away and materialistic global paradigm.  
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