Artist: Andrea Gutierrez
Media: Painting and Drawing featuring Coffee
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Marilyn Werby Gallery
About the Artist
Andrea Gutierrez is currently studying at CSULB where she hopes to obtain a bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts with a Painting and Drawing concentration. Andrea used to reside in Las Vegas, until she moved out to Long Beach where she found inspiration in the arts field. After working as a barista at a small coffee shop for 7 years, many of Andrea’s pieces are inspired by the coffee aspect. Her art’s main theme is created using material that has a great deal of meaning and that she has become an expert on, COFFEE! Even though many of her pieces were created fairly recent, she mostly focuses on what material she should use rather than the content or importance behind what she is creating. As Andrea moves forward in her art career, she constantly tries to venture outside her comfort zone and create pieces that have never been seen. Although Andrea’s coffee grind project was began with the intention of using different mediums, she realized how much coffee was a part of her life so she continues to incorporate it. But she hopes to continue finding new ways to incorporate coffee into new works of art.
Andrea’s pieces all contained different appearances in that nothing looked alike, but they all contained the same material, which was coffee. Not a single piece of art was without coffee. From her work experience as a barista, she incorporates the everyday handled material of coffee grounds making her pieces very textured. Some of her pieces contained undulating straight lines and curved lines. All of Andrea’s pieces contained warm, neutral colors with the addition of the coffee beans used as her “signature” in each of her piece. The warm colors of brown, black, red, orange, and yellow are associated to coffee and coffee businesses that she worked with and for in the past.
Andrea’s art is extremely unique because she uses coffee as her own special addition to the mediums in each of her pieces. The medium of her pieces is what Andrea mainly focuses upon creating her pieces. In her larger piece entitled “The Owners”, Andrea uses burlap straps containing meaning specific to her as a barista. There are eleven black straps that represent the amount of years the owners had the coffee shop, while seven burgundy straps represent how long she worked there. Because she was a barista and worked with coffee grinds, she chooses to combine being a barista with being an artist by incorporating coffee into her pieces. Andrea’s piece entitled “The Door (Push/Don’t Pull)” represents her life as a barista. Everyday she saw people come in just for a cup of coffee without thinking much else, but on her last day as she left the shop she realized that the store still stands with or without her.
Andrea combining her life as a barista with her life as an artist helps to create an identity and originality unique and specific to her as an individual and artist. Her work is so pure and original, and the fact that it’s all revolving around coffee is something I like. I work at Starbucks and I am a huge fan of coffee. Seeing someone else incorporate such a versatile component is amazing to me. Coffee isn’t just something that can be consumed by the mouth, but it can be consumed by eyes too. Andrea turning coffee into art is such an interesting creation that gives off a cozy vibe. I love how she chooses to remain rooted to her past as a barista while pursuing a life now as an artist. Andrea was able to take her experience as a barista and transform it into tangible pieces of art that now everyone can enjoy.