PODCAST: Artist Rick Vilchis talks street art, getting arrested and graffiti’s Mt. Everest

On Episode #29 of “Can You Hear Me, Long Beach?” Artist Rick “Rickster1” Vilchis dropped by to talk about the graffiti-inspired show he and three colleagues are taking part in at the Hi-lo Gallery within the offices of the Long Beach Post. Rick was supposed to come on, talk about “Resilience,” which opens on Thursday, Jan. 23, and then be on his way. Ten minutes tops.

What he did, was launch into a very personal and, at times, hilarious and educational story about how he came to make art his life and how that life has sometimes taken him to the edge… maybe even into custody a time or two.

“Resilience” is a step back in time to the mid-90s, when local graffiti artists like Vilchis and Jose “Steam” Martinez were coming up, creating community and making themselves seen through the competitive, albeit illegal, form of art. Luckily, there were safe spaces in Long Beach to paint at the time, where their creativity was able to flourish and they had the opportunity to mentor younger artists wanting to develop their own unique language of writing.

By the way, if you’d like to come to the opening of “Resilience” you can, as long as you RSVP while space is still available. So you probably want to do it soon. Like now. Space is limited. We can’t emphasize that enough.

Now give Rick a listen. You might learn something. We guarantee you’ll laugh. 

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Steve Lowery began his journalism career at the Los Angeles Times, where he planned to spend his entire career. God, as usual, laughed at his plans and he has since written for the short-lived sports publication The National, the L.A. Daily News, the Press-Telegram, New Times LA, the District and the OC Weekly. He is the Arts & Culture Editor for the Post, overseeing the Hi-lo.