Matty Davis wasn't cut out to be a fisherman, but his dad would drag him along all the time when Davis was growing up in Massachusetts. Like with most kids, this was the type of family-bonding activity that was carried out with clenched teeth, and like with most adults, Davis now fondly recalls the time he spent with his dad.
Davis—a street artist and illustrator—moved to San Diego 12 years ago and has been making art for the past seven years. To light a fire under his art career by surrounding himself with talented artists, he recently moved to Downtown from North County.
And he's surrounding himself with talented artists in Water to the Streets, a show he curated that explores street and contemporary artists' memories of the ocean. It goes down from 6 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 13, at Zepf Alt. Gallery (1150 Seventh Ave., Downtown).
"I wanted to do something based on my dad," Davis says. "So, I'm doing something water-based, where everybody can relate to it, since we're in Southern California and the Pacific Ocean is right there."
The show will include installations by Melissa Stager—who's building a pier, Davis says—and Scot Leverette. Also, Christopher Konecki, whom CityBeat profiled last month for his show, Quintessentially Californian, will show new work that Davis says is amazing. Eric Wixon will show pieces made from photographs and found objects taken from Isla Natividad.
"There's no old pieces in this show," he says. "It's all new work."
Mr. Dvice, Razian Roushan, Nick McPherson and Andrea Gruber Matthies were also selected for the show, along with Dave Matthies, who's helping Davis edit and produce some stop-go animation.
This is Davis' first time working in animation; Matthies does it professionally for ABC television. The two have been working together for the past two months at the computer, for up to 12 hours a day, transforming one of Davis' drawings of a narwhal and a man fishing on a tugboat into a whimsical piece of animation. It'll be projected on one of the gallery's walls.
"The gallery is just so punk-rock. It's in a basement, and it's just raw and edgy. When I saw it, I was, like, This is awesome—I want to put something in here.'" To get to the space, visitors must enter through Yoga One Studio.
Though Davis' dad—who still lives back east— won't be able to make it to the show, the artist says putting it on still has an important effect.
"Sometimes I wish I was a little bit closer," Davis says. "I think this kind of brings me a little bit closer to him."