Carlos de Villasante created "Hoodhenge" by displaying several painted car hoods in a small lot he purchased at Bodega Avenue and Baker Street.
"I have always wanted to share my work with a broader community than just gallery connoisseurs," Villasante said in a statement about the art. "I have only done so through public murals, all of which were done on the opposite coast."
He said he started with a single hood, moved from his former studio in Sebastopol, then added the rest.
"Petaluma is now my new home and as there are way too many people to invite to dinner, Hoodhenge is my gesture of appreciation to the community," Villasante, a native of Mexico City, said. "I love watering my plants or sitting on my porch while someone 'discovers' my contemporary archeological site, as they decide what it is doing there or decoding what it means."
His full statement about the art installation follows:
Growing up in Mexico City, archeological ruins were a part of the urban and historic landscape. My artwork has always dealt with re creating the feeling of discovering pyramids or finding artifacts on the ground; that hopeful imagining that one is on the verge of uncovering something that still has meaning.
I bought a house in Petaluma this past spring. The house has an empty triangular lot next to it, which I also purchased. I eventually want to build something on it but for the foreseeable future it was to sit vacant.
The property fronts Bodega Avenue and Baker Street and faces a small gourmet restaurant. I had the idea of creating a site-specific installation space in the empty lot. It is certainly visible to the community of drivers, pedestrians and cyclists who travel those thoroughfares.
I have always wanted to share my work with a broader community than just gallery connoisseurs. I have only done so through public murals, all of which were done on the opposite coast.
When I moved the contents of my large Sebastopol studio into storage I got to revisit all of my car hood paintings. I put onehood in my yard and was happy with the way it engaged the exterior space and passers by. It seemed funny that I live on Bodega Avenue which in Spanish means warehouse, yet I was storing my Art elsewhere. I decided to take my hoods out of storage and use my own bodeguita next door.
I have been told that the site sat empty for 15 years before La Bodeguita. That is just enough time for the weeds and soil to become distant relatives of those in Teotihuacan, Tula, Chichen itza, or Stonehenge.
Petaluma is now my new home and as there are way too many people to invite to dinner, Hoodhenge is my gesture of appreciation to the community. I love watering my plants or sitting on my porch while someone “discovers” my contemporary archeological site, as they decide what it is doing there or decoding what it means.BACKGROUND: I was born in Mexico city and grew up sharing my time between Boston and Mexico city. I moved here from Miami, FL where I lived 10 years. I have been with the University four years, (this is my fifth). I teach painting, drawing and design in the Art Department. I am an associate professor of painting.
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