Week 11 – Artist Conversation -Kyle Kruse

Artist: Kyle Kruse 
Exhibition: Janis Maxim
Media: Installation, Wood Carving, Film Making, Printing
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Merilyn Werby
Website: Kyle Kruse Art
Instagram: @kyle.kruse

This week we took a step into a mysterious, ominous, and tribal feel in Kyle Kruse’s exhibition Janis Maxim. Kyle Kruse is a sixth year senior at CSULB who has made Janis Maxim his senior show. Kyle is currently working on his BFA of print making and has made his focus on wood carving. Most of his inspirations come from the night and claims he has insomnia and mostly works on his projects at night. During his down time, Kyle likes to rock climb and enjoys eating his favorite food Curry. He has also put much thought into what he will do after his graduation this year and is looking to attend grad school to further his education and is looking at either Yale or NYU. Kyle has always been a creative soul and claims that he started drawing stuff out of junk from junk yard and his grandparents are art collectors and influenced him to get into print making.

This exhibit is definitely very easy on the eyes. Immediately when one steps into the dim lit room you feel the mood change. It seemed wild and mysterious but it was inviting and engaged my sense of wonder. After reading the letter and the poem it was like I was being invited to explore and make my own interpretation of the exhibit. There were three masks that seemed to have been sewed together from different cloths. On the wall, were three different wooden shields with the drawings of the mentioned creatures in Kyle’s letter. Kyle says his vision of the exhibit is to let the guest navigate through it because if it’s guided then you won’t fully experience it.

The exhibit was one of the more memorable ones this semester in my opinion due to the cool vibes it was emitting. It made me want to get in touch with my inner wild side. What stood out to me the most were the masks. The masks reminded me of a cinematic prop but in reality it was much more. It represented a figure in which others look at for help in their lives or to relate it to the different cycles in ones life. The masks were my favorite part of the exhibit. Also noted was the floors and how there seemed to be a messy but raw feel to the exhibit. It helped add to the feeling that we were in an organic and raw exhibit which seemed tribal to a certain extent.


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