Homebodies no. 17 – Cesar Piedra

Homebodies no. 17 – Cesar Piedra

The Homebodies series explores the personal spaces of community members, the artworks and interesting objects they’ve collected through the years, and how those pieces live with them every day. Our first tour of 2021 is brought to us by local artist and UNR student Cesar Piedra whose collection is filled with talented peers and mentors while sneaking in lil bits of anime and pop culture here and there. Click images to enlarge.

1. Top to Bottom: Emily Kray, Fragment painting; Ally Messer, Risso Nautilus; Cesar Piedra, Cuttlefish ceramics. 2. Ana McKay; Denali Lowder; 3. Left to Right: Edw Martinez; Ian Childers; 4. Kristy Moreno, Homegirl Mug

1. Emily Kray was in her second year of the BFA when I started the program and she gave me this framed fragment painting before she left for Graduate School. I had a void at the top of my Cephalopoda shrine and it made a wonderful addition, which was complemented by the framed nautilus print by Ally Messer. I have always appreciated her bright color palette. The cuttlefish surrounding the works are part of my cuttlefish series from a few years ago. They are for sale on my website (shameless plug) at cesarpiedra.com, I thought it would be cool to display them and watch their numbers dwindle as people bought them.

2. I love these two prints, I sometimes catch myself laying on my bed on a pile of pillows and blankets staring at Ana’s print in the same position as the subject, which makes me laugh and it gives me a greater appreciation for the work. Denali’s print bridges my love of Jumex with Public Radio, I also really dig her use of line.

5. Left to Right: Denali Lowder, Sherm Spiral Mug; Hannah Huntley, Cactus Plush; Tricia Emily Ann Schmidt, Pirate Sloth Mug; Casey Sibley, Hedgehog painting. 6. Robert Wilson IV, Oni Holographic Print; Audrey Kawasaki, Charmer Print; Robert Wilson IV, Plague of Crows.

3-5. I’ve always been a real big fan of the way that potters collect one another’s cups and how they make their way into their living spaces as opposed to being stored in a cupboard. I acquired the majority of these wares through the Ceramics conferences NCECA & CCACA, while some were gifts. They each have a unique feel to how they are held and used which is something I appreciate, as it strays away from the conventional handle on a mug.

6. The blue crows caught my attention and I liked the reference to graphic novels. I framed and matted the Kawasaki piece under the guidance of Emily Kray when we worked at the frame shop together. I was a fan of Audrey Kawasaki’s work from the first time I saw it in Hi-Fructose as a highschooler. I really enjoyed learning about her and her work through independent study projects. The holographic poster print was shiny and reminded me of Pokemon cards, I also dug the roses in the background, in fact, there are flowers in all three prints.  

Artists in this photo: Mariah Vargas, Reniel Del Rosario, Sharon Bluemer, Nathaniel Benjamin, zines by Laika Press, Ally Messer, and Denali Lowder, and Kristy Moreno.

7. This one is massive and I don’t know where to begin. *inhale* The blue and yellow light piece in the left corner was a gift from my BFA peer Mariah Vargas titled “Bodies”. You can say that it was the light that sparked the body of work she created for her thesis exhibition LVR, it illuminates the corner of my room that does not receive proper light and brightens up the background during zoom lectures. I am stoked that I can give this work of art a home. 

The rest of the cluster of art at the center ranges from exhibition cards, ceramics, zines, prints, and drawings from local and nonlocal artists. Richard Jackson’s orange and blue shitbirds paired well with the like-colored avatar prints. I am a huge nerd and enjoy pop-culture, this is reflected by the Kaiju Romance prints at the bottom and the Jiraya on a toad at the top. I find myself buying prints that speak to my nerd impulses whenever I attend a con or a fair.

I have a small collection of zines which I like to display on top of framed works because they go unappreciated if stored on a bookshelf. The smaller works without frames are small tokens of appreciation from artists that I have bought work from, they range from small prints to stickers.