Interview by Paul Salfen
"No Matter What You Are Going Through, You Are Not Alone" - Dave Navarro
WEST CHELSEA CONTEMPORARY PRESENTS DUEL DIAGNOSIS FEATURING WORKS BY ARTISTIC DUO DAVE NAVARRO AND PADHiA, WITH GUEST ARTIST AL DIAZ
From The Press Release:
AUSTIN, Texas (March 9, 2022) – West Chelsea Contemporary announces the March 12 opening of Duel Diagnosis, an immersive exhibition featuring the artistic duo Dave Navarro – best known as a member of rock band Jane’s Addiction and guitarist with Red Hot Chili Peppers – and Los Angeles-based street artist PADHiA, running through April 17. As a collaborative, Duel Diagnosis seeks to bring new perspectives and deeper understanding to the experience of mental health through its collective artistic endeavors, a series of raw and vulnerable artworks which invite reflection and connection. The gallery will contemporaneously show a selection of works by featured artist Al Diaz, known for his first-generation subway graffiti art and as co-creator of SAMO with Jean-Michel Basquiat.
Navarro and PADHiA conceive of Duel Diagnosis as a series of fine art, street art, impactful installations and other representations of both their individual and culture’s shared experiences around mental health. The project challenges society’s narrow margin of what is considered acceptable, normal and pretty, and shines an enchanting light on the honest, deeper truths of the human experience. This exhibit seeks to bring new perspective, deeper understanding and connection, and call attention to the absolute absurd complexity of being human.
Dave Navarro is a musician, activist, and street artist who has worked in the creative field for most of his life. A onetime oil painter, Navarro admits that he didn’t have the patience for oils and traded in his visual art medium for the immediacy of the street. A trauma survivor and sufferer of PTSD, Navarro is motivated to bring awareness to mental health issues and to dispel the often attendant stigma associated with them. Through the art he creates, especially his #traumakids movement, he aims to share strength through people’s universal experiences of challenge and overcoming trauma in our lives, which he believes connect us more than we are aware.
PADHiA is a Los Angeles-based street artist, designer and writer whose work can best be described as psychological commentary. Where most other street artists pull from external themes such as politics, pup culture, and social commentary, PADHiA’s work explores the often undiscovered and obscure aspects of our interior human landscape. She is the originator of several viral movements including Unfuk Yourself: be who you were before all the stuff happened that dimmed your f*cking shine, and the Love Me Anyways thought initiative, which she’s also expanded into a fine art and apparel line.
Duel Diagnosis features two short films, a large-scale immersive installation and over 80 new works from this duo, along with select works from the show’s guest artist Al Diaz. Timed to the opening of the show, Navarro and PADHiA will release a limited edition of collectible NFTs (non-fungible tokens), via public drop, at 11 a.m. CST on Saturday, March 12 on Legend, the NFT marketplace that bundles NFTs and collectible merchandise. Collectors will need to make a Legend account to purchase with a credit card or ETH (Ethereum) transfer via MetaMask, the crypto wallet used to interact with the Ethereum blockchain. The timing of the public NFT drop coincides with the exhibition’s public opening event hosted by PADHiA and Al Diaz, taking place at the gallery from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 12.
West Chelsea Contemporary’s Austin gallery is open Monday through Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m, and on Sundays from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.. For more information about West Chelsea Contemporary and Duel Diagnosis, please visit https://wcc.art/, @wcc.gallery on Facebook, and @wcc.art on Instagram.