THE ART PLUG EDITORIAL: CB HOYO
Over the past year, the 22-year-old self-taught artist CB Hoyo has been turning the heads of everyone from Instagram tastemakers to art collectors by creating subversive paintings that recreate the works of classic artists then adding a cheeky layer of text on top.
Hoyo, who was part of Marcel Katz Art’s program at Art Palm Beach in January 2018 and Mood Swings during Miami Art Week in December 2017, opened his debut London show in early February at Imitate Modern. The show was satirically titled “Keeping It Real” and featured 20 “new fakes” that build on the work of Warhol, Murakami, Picasso and others.
Hoyo’s paintings riff on money, status and cultural prestige within the art world, all with a playfulness that makes the work accessible to both insiders and outsiders.
“I tend to work with well-known subjects, things that almost everyone knows and that are easy to recognize and relate to. Doing this really helps to reach a wider audience,” Hoyo told Forbes in a recent interview.
In any given Hoyo painting, phrases like “THIS WARHOL IS JUST LIKE MY LOVE LIFE - FAKE & DEPRESSING,” “MARRY ME, I OWN A ROTHKO” and "THIS FAKE BANKSY WAS MADE BY A THIRD WORLD CHILD” are laid over expertly reproduced classics. Hoyo’s work calls attention to the often absurd nature of wealth and culture. Naturally, collectors love them.
“Money has the value we give it - at the end, it's just numbers and paper,” Hoyo told Forbes.
Hoyo grew up in Cuba and the Dominican Republic before moving to Europe around four years ago.
“Moving to Europe four years ago switched on something inside me. I started taking art more seriously, I started painting more, creating new things,” Hoyo told Forbes. “About a year ago, while working at a place, I was miserable and realized that ART was the thing that made me the happy. After this knew I wanted to be an artist and only dedicate my time to art.”
Hoyo recently executed a limited edition collaboration with the Italian sunglasses brand Spektre. At a dinner celebrating the collaboration, the artist staged a live intervention that blurred the lines between art, fashion and performance. During the dinner, Hoyo executed a series of live customizations of Spektre cases, in the process creating a real-time performance that showcased his improvisational art making skills.
On deck for the artist is a Spring solo show at One Arts Club in Milan and a collaboration with Thirsty Bstrd at Kruse Gallery in New York this coming Fall. At the end of the day, although he can be wildly critical, Hoyo’s work comes from a place of positivity. Art is his passion, and he does it because it is what he loves.
“Life’s too short not to do what you want and enjoy it, that’s one of my life mottos,” he said.