Tooth & Nails: Urban Americana, Opening reception, July 6, 5-8 p.m., Cucuru Gallery Café, 2332 W. Colorado Ave.
lassic Americana art explores the history and culture of the U.S., usually depicting rural scenes, towns and families — think Norman Rockwell and the like. Artist Joey Diamante takes a lot of inspiration from this style, but undeniably puts his own spin on it. “It’s Americana mixed with vandalism and ADHD,” he says. “It’s a mixture of everything I love. Mischief and love.” Diamante grew up doing graffiti, and has always admired street art. Combining those influences with the style of Americana, he says, makes sense to him. Diamante’s subjects are quintessentially modern American, with figures depicted in a classic ‘50s style (albeit usually with more tattoos). Add on graffiti-colored cityscapes and modern buildings, often in a state of disrepair, and Diamante’s work upgrades the Leave It to Beaver
style of Americana, bringing it into the modern age and into the city. You can check out his work all month at Cucuru Gallery Café