Destination Del Sol
In mid-2017 Ethan Lipsitz was diagnosed with a cancerous brain tumor after suffering a seizure in his sleep. Thus began a healing process that, in tandem with traditional medical treatment, encompassed all aspects of his life. From stepping down as CEO of the company he co-founded, to radically altering his diet, he reoriented his life towards creating art and joy on a daily basis.
At the end of the year he bought a 1995 Honda Del Sol, fixed it up, painted it wildly and convinced his friend & creative collaborator Daniel Johnson to drive from LA down to the tip of the Baja Peninsula and back.
Could a vehicle be both an extension of the body and a part of the creative healing process?
This 9 day journey through Mexico was captured by Daniel's lens and upon returning to the States Ethan created fabric art inspired by the vehicle. They then invited others into their experience with an exhibition displaying the car, artifacts from the trip, and a commemorative presentation.
Destination Del Sol took place on April 21st as a celebration of life, art and healing. This page immortalizes the work and is a small glimpse into Ethan & Daniel's experience traversing the Baja Peninsula at the end of an intense year of change and growth.
April 20-21, 2018
Framed 7" x 10"giclée prints $100
Hand Sewn Freak Flags $55
Handpainted Sweatshirts $165
Hand Sewn Hats $75
Pause for a moment. Can you identify the one thing you wish you could do right now? What are you simultaneously most afraid of and most excited by? What’s stopping you from just doing it? Now go deeper, what if you were just diagnosed with brain cancer? Then what would it be? Let's call this thing your ‘highest excitement’.
At the end of 2017 after being diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor, I was challenged to identify my ‘highest excitement’ in making New Years plans. After some contemplation and deep conversations with friends I found it in purchasing a 1995 Honda Del Sol, fixing it enough to drive, painting it in a joyful, freeform way and driving to the tip of Baja, Mexico and back with my good friend and collaborator Daniel Johnson.
This exhibition is a physical expression of our journey. It is a testament that fear can be released to freedom, that a vehicle, body and spirit moving through space is a sacred practice that can exist as a colorful expression of joy and healing for oneself and others. It’s also a reminder to slow down and connect with the earth that exists between destinations, where people have homes and tell stories, ancient structures decay, and stretches of landscape ignite the senses.
That which forces us to recognize the frailty of life and thus the precious nature of our relationships is both a vicious slap in the face and a generous gift of clarity. When one of your best friends who’d just had brain surgery 5 months prior and was currently undergoing chemo invites you on a roadtrip to Mexico to ring in the new year, that’s not the type of thing you’ll regret saying yes to.
When it also involves him buying a 95 Honda del Sol and hand painting it in a style inspired by Keith Haring and Jean Miro in bright primary colors, and an invitation to crash a wedding at the southern tip of Baja, that eliminates all the remaining reasons to decline.
Roadtrips have become integral to my artistic journey. Not only are they convenient methods to explore and capture new images, they are a metaphor of the creative process itself. Just as a physical destination is the catalyst for a journey that becomes so much more than the simple arrival, the idea that sparks any act of creation is rarely as important as the process which forms the final product.
After witnessing Ethan’s health journey last year, I couldn’t possibly say no to an art adventure. Our destination was simply the catalyst to convert a car into an intentional moving spaceship to create within, to see a vehicle as a representation of the body, and roadtrips as both medicine and metaphor for life.