Artists Unite

Cabo 8 wants to creates an intellectual artistic movement
BY: LACEY STORER

Hugo Aguilar is trying to bring an artists’ renaissance to Cabo. For years, he’s had this idea of getting back to the romanticism of art; back to the time when artists would gather in coffee houses and bars and discuss their work and ideas.

So, Aguilar got together with his friend and fellow artist, Alfredo Sosa, to find like-minded artists who shared his vision. He wanted the group to become friends and family, so the artists invited into the group were chosen for their attitudes as much as their works. Together, they formed Cabo 8.

cabo8.JPGThe artists in the group include: Aguilar, Sosa, Leo de Albarracin, Mamanchatte, Piero Milani, Alberto Padilla, Edgar Zamora, and Fernando Naffarate. Their work includes painting (in several different styles, ranging from realism to modernist), sculpture and photography. The Cabo 8 artists come from around the world – Mexico, Italy and Bolivia – though they all make their homes in Los Cabos now.

Bringing these artists together not only makes the artistic movement stronger in Los Cabos, it also promotes the culture of the community. “It’s not just one artist, it’s a group of artists working for something in common,” Aguilar explains.

They’re working to bring a more intellectual approach to art. Aguilar says that a lot of art today comes from a purely organic place, where the artist just puts something on a canvas without thinking about form or technique, and without any organization. “Even Jackson Pollack had a technique,” Aguilar says. (For you non-artsy fartsy readers, Pollack was a famous abstract artist whose paintings look like a bunch of paint splatters on canvas.)

The Cabo 8 artists want other artists to realize that art should be more than just doing what you feel and hoping someone buys it. “We want to try and inspire other artists to care more about what they do,” Aguilar says. “Even if you show in the street, try to show some quality.”

The Cabo 8 gather almost every Sunday to discuss topics like composition and the psychology of color. They teach each other lessons, focusing on how the traditional techniques of art can be applied to modern works. But, just as Aguilar had hoped, it’s not all about work. Some of the artists have known each other for more than 20 years, and the group gets together to cook dinner, or go to the beach with their families.

And, of course, the Cabo 8 artists showcase their works together too. Each of the artists creates pieces (which range in price from $1,000 to $10,000 USD) specifically for the Cabo 8 exhibitions; those works aren’t shown or sold anywhere else. Aguilar says this is to maintain the artistic identity of the group. Their most recent exhibition was at Maravilla and they are in talks with Las Ventanas to have a permanent exhibit.

To be showing at these kinds of places, and have people actually pay them to put on exhibitions, is not something Aguilar expected to happen so quickly. Cabo 8 is only in its second season (which finished this month) and Aguilar says he had no idea the group and its work would expand the way it has.

Along with promoting an intellectual artistic movement, another part of Cabo 8’s mission is to give back to charity. The group donates 15% of its sales. Last year, they gave roughly $1,100 USD to Casa Hogar. Aguilar says that this year, Cabo 8 wants to do something different and give directly to the people who need help. One idea is to assemble food packages and deliver them to low income families in Los Cabos. However, Aguilar is quick to point out that charitable giving isn’t the main focus of the group. It’s just a small way they can give back while also opening more doors for Cabo 8. (Let’s be honest, people like being able to say that the art they show/buy helps the needy).

Looking ahead to November and the start of its third season, Cabo 8 already has big things planned. The group is looking at opening a gallery in the gallery district in downtown San Jose. Aguilar says the artists are also planning on making their exhibitions more interactive by working on pieces during the shows, so people can see how they create. They’re going to take their shows on the road, too, hosting exhibitions in big cities like Mexico City and Guadalajara.

“We just want to see where this takes us,” Aguilar says. “We don’t believe in luck, we don’t believe in good fortune, we believe in work. If you don’t work, you get nothing.”

To learn more about the Cabo 8 artists, their works and upcoming shows, visit their website at www.cabo8.mx or find them at Facebook.com/caboeight.      ,