In preparation for this year's Big Brain awards, we're checking up with a few of last year's winners. Know an emerging creative who could use $1000? Nominate 'em right here before March 14.
Our Big Brain today: Spencer Hibert.
Spencer Hibert's a plastic man -- that is, he's wicked talented at designing, casting, and creating art, with plastic.
You may have seen the local artist's plastic Miigii or mini versions that have been featured in art shows and vending machines all over the world. But in the last year, Hibert cast the largest plastic character he's ever created -- the Goo Goo Ghandi.
"Another boss defeated ... on to the next level!" he says. "As of now there's only been one clear blue prototype created, but I am currently working on finishing the master mold and hand rotationally casting a very limited series of hollow resin versions ... Imagine super shiny, black melting liquid plastic, paused for your enjoyment."
In the last year, Hibert says he's had to learn how to prioritize while still having fun. He opened Soyal Gallery, one of the many pop-up art spots in Scottsdale, over the Summer with his business partner Emmett Potter.
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Hibert says the gallery was developed as a larger venue for his work and as an opportunity to showcase pieces by his brother, Oliver Hibert, as well as Grant Wiggins, Bwana Spoons from Portland, Bigfoot from New York, Jeremyville from Australia, Miss Lotion from Denmark, and Naoshi from Japan.
Soyal closed in August and re-opened as Squeeze (without Hibert) in September. "Partnerships don't always work out," says Hibert. "I had to make a decision where I wanted to put my efforts, and when it came down to it, my decision was to create art. I'm very happy about that decision, after all, I am an artist."
Hibert shifted focus, and worked on his Illuminated Mushroom Forest dioramas, which he says was an idea he'd be trying to shape for hears, and is currently working on his Fractal Kachina series (pictured right). "When the ideas come pouring in faster than I can make them," he says, "I know it's a good thing."
You can catch a few of his pieces in the Plastic Antics show at 5&6 Gallery in Scottsdale, which opened Thursday.