Artist and Los Angeles-native Ruben Rojas shows us what a little bit of love and a lot of color can do to make the heart happier, even when we’re living through tumultuous times. Through his bold aesthetic, he shouts his philosophy from the rooftops–as well as the sides of building and in various installations across the country (Chicago, San Antonio, Houston, Columbus (Ohio), Iowa, Mississippi, Pennsylvania) and Paris, France. You can even buy “love” in the form of small sculptures for your home or office through this website (rubenrojas.com).
Back in 2013, Rojas traded his suit and corporate job for paint and various art supplies to share his overriding belief that if individuals can live through love, humanity has the potential to endure and be all the better for it. “It’s easy to question our belonging, worth and life,” he says. “The truth is that each one of you belongs here and brings so much value to those around you. Never doubt your existence!”
The Westfield Topanga Mall, just outside of Los Angeles, was an apt place to kick off a real-life “Summer of Love” and art unveiling, especially given that he spent some of his youth in the San Fernando Valley. In keeping with his other public artworks, the three new and Instagram-able art installations and sculptures (Unity, Equality, and, of course, “You Belong Here) reflected pop art influences (Keith Haring, Andy Warhol, Jean-Michel Basquiat) and his Southern California upbringing.
The late July event also served as a launch pad for his new activewear collection (sold on rubenrojas.com) allowing men, women and kids to wear their hearts on their sleeves (and elsewhere). In Los Angeles, tees with an exclusive Rojas design raising funds for FeedSoCal (addressing food insecurity in the wake of COVID-19) in partnership with local television network affiliate KABC-TV.