Emerging Arizona Artist: Alberto Devon

In spite of its alluring draw, the world of art can be an incredibly intimidating one. In this day and age where people have more access to different mediums, influences, and styles than ever before, the competition has grown increasingly stiff and subsequently, so has the judgment cast upon art. Two key aspects of succeeding in this daunting culture are individuality and courage in the face of adversity. Alberto Devon embodies both of those traits wholly. 

 Photography : @jeffottocreative

Though Devon’s style is unabashedly unique and skillful, he’s only been painting for about six years. Most of his works are done for himself, as he says he paints around the house a lot, but it was his girlfriend who encouraged him to take his art public. 

“I was real protective of my work but I just got out of my comfort zone and decided to start bringing it out to the world,” Devon said. “This is actually my first time painting live or painting in public, or even showing stuff in public.” 

Devon said the project admittedly made him a bit nervous but he considered it to be a worthy challenge.

“I felt like if I could get this under my belt, it’d be like learning how to do the three-pointer in basketball,” Devon said. 

The basketball comparisons don’t stop there. Devon’s work takes heavy influence from Jean-Michel Basquiat, but his paintings are always packed with elements and symbols entirely unique to him. He equates this approach to the legacy of two basketball titans.  

“As I’ve been studying his work, I want to be like the Kobe Bryant to his Jordan. We still have the same form, but we’ve also got our different styles at the same time,” said Devon. 

Devon’s style and personal influence were on full display with the bike he was painting. Terms and statements such as “Urban Myth”, “Off The Fly”, “Lost Souls”, and “Stay Alive” adorned the bike along with imagery of the Arizona mountains and the late football legend Pat Tillman. 

Personal expression is a key factor in Devon’s art. As he said himself, his art contains “a lot of urban messages, like the reality of the world. Sometimes we get so lost in social media or the status quo and a lot of times we lose sight of reality. I just want to keep people grounded whilst also looking to the sky.” 

It’s an inspiring message from an inspiring man. Though Devon expressed appreciation for how great everyone had been and how comfortable they’d made him for his first live performance, he says he prefers canvases because he “feel[s] like you get the best of my work when it comes to canvases”. 

Despite being relatively new to creating art, Devon clearly already has a distinct awareness of his image that few artists share. His relative inexperience doesn’t hold back his ambition either, as his next work is described as a “modern hieroglyph” with “paint with cement added onto it to make it look like a tablet” which will display on-brand urban messages as well as elements of African culture.

Shop Alberto Devon on Instagram.




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