Justin BUA's Distorting Urban Realism


Sixteen Students work in silence as their teacher paces around the circle and peers over their shoulders, catching glimpses of their creations. The professor stops behind one students, nudges her out of the way, sits in her place and begins drawing. He mutters quiet phrases such as, "work on the initial action and energy of the pose ... Think of things sculpturally ... Feel the form ..." as he sketches lines and shapes on the paper in front of him. He talks passionately about figure drawing, noting the importance of spheres and cylinders that comprise shapes of human body.

He is 34-year-old artist Justin Bua, who is helping his students capture the likeness of the model in front of them.

Bua teaches Drawing for Animation at USC (FA207A), a class that focuses on the fundamental technical and classical techniques of drawing.

He is more than just an art teacher - he is an innovator in the artistic world.

Today, USC students have the opportunity to meet Bua and examine his artwork on campus. He will be in front of the USC bookstore from 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. for a poster signing featuring his newly released works, "Como No?" and "The DJ." Special guest DJs include the Fantastik 4our, J.Rocc and Truly Odd.

Children and teenagers from all over Los Angeles will be based in to visit with Bua and the characters that act as role models for their urban generation.

A portion of the money raised at the USC poster signing will benefit the Los Angles-based charity, Hope and Hollywood.

By mingling with the streetwise characters in his artwork, passers-by will get acquainted with Bua's artistic odyssey.

Bua grew up in Manhattan during the so-called "hip-hop renaissance," where break-dancers, graffiti artists and poets were the most celebrated people on the streets.

The older kids that Bua admired in his youth are the basis for the characters in his artwork. And these characters featured in his artwork, represents this generation's urban population.

Bua describes himself as the voice for kids with the "In-N-Out Burger and In-N-Out culture mentality."

He believes that because today's children have grown up on fast food and MTV, they have become easily uninterested and detached from what art is and what art could mean to them.

Explaining that the unveiling of ancient art was like the movies, he now unfortunately sees art as disregarded and unimportant to kids.

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