11-year-old Artist Talks Art Basel, Venice Beach, and Gun Violence with the LA Times
11-year-old sixth grader and artist, Charles Gitnick, from Los Angeles is the talk of the town in the art world, boasting title features at the Washington Post, Yahoo! News, Huffington Post, and the LA times. The young prodigy’s current work involves spray painted guns ranging in size and color, splattered with “Jackson Pollock-esk” paint drips, intended to bring awareness to America’s epidemic of shootings and violence. He calls his art work “3-D gun art” and claims that he was seven when he first started creating abstract artwork. He also asserts was inspired to be an artist by the work of Andy Warhol, Lenonardo Da Vinci, and Basquiat.
(AP Photo/J Pat Carter) Photo Taken from: Yahoo News
He writes in his website bio: “My feelings about guns are that they are scary and dangerous. When I make one of my pieces, I create a background and then I camouflage the gun to make it almost invisible. The gun is still there but it’s hard to see it or you don’t see it for what it really is. Hopefully my art will get people talking about guns, gun safety and gun violence. I wish guns were only in an art gallery.”
In a recent interview conducted with LA times, Gitnick talks about how he first sold his art in Venice Beach. The LA times asks:
LA Times: Last December’s Sandy Hook school shooting in Connecticut affected you – and your art – deeply. Can you elaborate on that?
Gitnick: I stopped making art for 18 days because of it because I was afraid people would think I was promoting guns and not like my art. My dad talked to me about it and told me when those bad things happen it’s not a time for artists to back down; that’s when everyone is talking about it, it’s the best time to get the message out. So I started making art again.
We rented a house in Venice a few years ago and we were walking on the boardwalk and I sold some gun art on the boardwalk — we got a permit. That was the first time I sold to the public. This summer we sold every weekend in July. We made $1,100 in one day, the most I’ve ever made in a day. I’m saving for a car.
Gabrielle lives in So Cal. She’s black.