Everything Adrian Stein creates is a whole-body experience…literally. Stein’s artistic journey began when he was a child living in Guatemala. He expressed himself through body painting performance, covering his entire body with paint and pressing it against the walls of his home. (It didn’t take long for his mother to allocate a wall for him to use as his own canvas.) Since moving to Chicago four years ago, his method of expression has since progressed to include several mediums, including paint, 3-D design, photography, and poetry.

Stein’s art offers a provocative experience full of bright colors, overlapping pictures, and designs that seem to have a mind of their own, carrying on endlessly and rampantly. Essentially, his style cannot be reduced to a single genre, and may be best described in Stein’s own words as:
“Childish anarchy that evolved into, like, totally coded and undecipherable personal mythology. Kinda heady and trippy and kinda about everything and nothing at the same time.”

Mind melting

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Stein’s art contains a far-out psychological quality, yet it maintains a human sense of connection to ourselves and the world around us. His latest project, titled The Cartography of the Skin, explores humans’ relationship to the world around them. In this project, Stein’s art relates bodily decay to land erosion, connecting “the skin we inhabit with the world we inhabit.”

In addition to finding inspiration through nature, Stein also explores art’s relationship with more logic-based subjects such as biology, physics, and math. While he still practices his original love for body painting performance, his contemporary art forms take on deeper, more philosophical contexts. Since his art has matured, Stein now finds himself focusing less on the pleasing aesthetic of art, and more so on its ability to communicate a mood or message of a particular time.

“I’ve come to a place where I’ve validated my art image for myself. Before, I always wanted to make something perfect and like-able and pleasing, and now I realize that if I find happiness in what I’m doing, then that is going to radiate outward. It’s something that has switched from something outside of myself to something inside of myself, and that has made my style more crazy and explorative.”

While Stein’s work reflects his own thoughts and interests, he is drawn to arts’ connection to likeminded artists and viewers. Naturally, Stein’s need to create community through his art led him straight to Canvas.

As a longtime lover and follower of Canvas, Stein is excited to show his art at our upcoming Secret Sauce event, where he “can’t wait to dip his nachos in that secret sauce.”

Come out and support Adrian at Secret Sauce, and make sure to keep up with his latest work by following his Instagram.

Talent: Immersive (painter/performer/poet)

Style: Psychedelic (trippy/interactive/sensory)

Sauce: Combo meal (awesome sauce on cool beans)

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