"Buy Now Cry Later" opens at Public Functionary tonight

"Buy Now Cry Later" opens at Public Functionary tonight
Patrick Martinez

"Buy Now Cry Later," the latest exhibition at Public Functionary, features Patrick Martinez's satirical send-up of food and advertising. On display are various neon signs and lit-up artworks that both embrace and critique consumer encouragements found outside and inside so many bars, restaurants, and businesses.

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Public Functionary's inaugural exhibition is victorious
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Patrick Martinez
Patrick Martinez

Like DZINE, who was featured in Public Functionary's inaugural show, Martinez's work has a kitschy quality, poking fun of pop culture while embracing it at the same time. The neon signs contain phrases such as "Break Bread," with an advertisement-style image showing different kinds of breads and hidden faces, "Bullets $15,000.00 Each," and "Money Orders Everything" with an accompanying image of a 40-oz bottle of beer, bowl of fruit, and a rose. 

Other pieces directly confront the nutritional choices encouraged in much of our society. In one piece, a neon square frames a bag of Cheetos, a Coke, and some Skittles as a skull looms in the background. Another work presents a neon 40-oz bottle with "agua" written on it. In yet another piece, Martinez depicts three Shasta bottles of different flavors. On the one hand, these pieces employ a blunt messaging, but on the other hand, there's almost a sense of nostalgia in exploring the unhealthy way Americans approach food. 

There are more abstract works as well. There's one piece where Martinez presents conglomerations of guns, an American flag, fruit, and flowers. Another artwork mashes up images of fruit, hamburgers, and abstract shapes with a design of neon lines that act as a kind of border.
Patrick Martinez 
Patrick Martinez 

As a background to Martinez's neon pieces, the walls of Public Functionary have been painted wildly bright colors. Director Tricia Khutoretsky was taken aback when Martinez first sent her a color scheme for the walls. As an alternative, Martinez then sent a more subdued jewel-toned plan, but ultimately Khutoretsky went with his original scheme. The result -- a mix of lime green, bright yellow, and other hues --  adds to the humorous style of the exhibition, even when the show as a whole contains a serious message. 


"Patrick Martinez: Buy Now Cry Later"
8 p.m. to midnight Friday, November 15
Through December 20
Public Functionary
1400 12th Ave. NE, Minneapolis
There will be an artist's talk 1 p.m. Saturday, November 16
Gallery hours are 2 to 7 p.m. Thursdays and 7 p.m. to midnight Fridays

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Public Functionary

1400 12th Ave. NE
Minneapolis, MN 55413


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