• Bridney Casillas

Blossom in His Reality: The Fantasy World of Antzinyopants

Meet the Hartford-based Visual Artist who Loves Blending Vibrant Colors with Whimsical Imagery

By Bridney Casillas

29-year-old Hartford-based visual artist, Antwaun Wright a.k.a. Antzinyopants sits inside his studio.

Antwaun Wright, also known as Antzinyopants, is a Connecticut-based visual artist known for his realistic, colorful acrylic portraits. Ant is a successful artist well known for his intense, sparkling imagery.

The 29-year-old uses spring-inspired "eye-taunting colors" by using vibrant colors that blend well together. His majestic imagery leaves the viewer's imagination running wild in a whimsical, colorful world.

The starting price is $350 for a 16" x 20" piece, although his price range fluctuates depending on whether a client asks for a custom painting, clothing piece, or digital art. On average, it takes between 1 to 3 days or even two weeks to complete an art piece, depending on the detail.

Ant prefers to use acrylics, although he recently has been leaning towards digital. He focuses on the themes of body positivity, confidence, and self-love.

"Art heals me because when all else fails, it is something that has had my back for years. A lot of emotion goes into my work, whether it is an emotional piece or not," says Ant.

Sprout Hood, 2020. Digital Illustration. 24" x 18"

Ant describes his work as being a mix of pop-culture and eroticism. He believes it is important to express his personality and sexual side, saying each of his paintings subtly tells meaningful stories.

Hailing from the north end of Hartford, Connecticut, Ant started creating when he was in pre-school. He did not realize he had an artistic gift until he participated in an elementary school class project that was highlighted in the Hartford Courant newspaper.

"Art came into my life very early on. I feel like I just came out of the oven ready to create."

After taking AP art at Windsor High School, he decided to pursue an art career full-time after graduating. The first original painting he created was during his senior year of high school, which currently hangs inside his home.

His first-ever painting was inspired by iconic visual artists Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring. After graduating high school, Ant attended the Art Institute of Atlanta to study illustration with original plans to become a cartoonist.

"Creating is a form of therapy and is an outlet to display your imagination without actually saying it."

Garden of Sinz, 2020. Acrylic. 18" x 24"

In November 2019, Ant hosted his first art show, an exhibition named BLOSSOM at Tainted Inc, a professional studio space in West Hartford. The showcase focused on personal growth and how people can transform anything viewed as ugly into something beautiful.

He hosted his second art exhibition, BLOS2OM (Blossom 2), which opened at The Hudson art gallery in Hartford from March 6th to March 28th, 2020. The second showcase centered around the same theme as its predecessor.

His top three favorite artworks hold meaning for him, and each has its own story. The first one, Sprout Hood is a digital painting he created on the digital painting app, Procreate.

Sprout Hood is the most popular print among his clients and tells the story of two shirtless men standing in a field surrounded by a yellow and pink sky. One man is helping the other man tie his du-rag with a kind, calm facial expression. The digital painting is a play on male masculinity and fragility. Its meaning is to teach men how to not allow society to place them into stereotypical, gender-role boxes.

His second favorite, Garden of Sinz is an acrylic painting of a nude Afro man standing in a garden with a fancy, pink sun hat and broken butterfly wings. The man appears to look confused, staring emotionless at the viewer, and is unsure of which direction to go in. The meaning behind it is a representation of how society negatively views sexuality.

Last Black Unicorn, 2020. Acrylic. 18" x 24"

Finally, Last Black Unicorn is a commissioned piece he shipped to Chicago over the summer of a client looking in the mirror and imagining himself as a black unicorn. The man looking in the mirror feels like he is the black sheep of society and is concerned about being targeted by racist people as a young Black man. Painted during the height of the Black Lives Matter protests and rallies, the artwork poses the question as to how society can "protect our Black men from dying."

Ant is not only a visual artist but is also a published illustrator and fashion designer. Published on May 20th, 2020, he released his first coloring book, Blossom: Coloring Book, which included 58 pages of all-new, exclusive illustrations.

Designing clothes since 2016, he is also the owner of Antzinyopants, which sells apparel for men such as robes, du-rags, and briefs. Cupid's Chokehold and BLOSSOM are two clothing collections that are currently for sale on his website.

His goal for 2021 is to publish another coloring book and curate an interactive exhibition. He also plans on creating more artworks and having people display them in their homes.

"I have adopted my little lane to where I can see my art reach different lanes. Hell, I want to see my art touch home décor one day."

Follow Antzinyopants on Instagram @antzinyopants and Twitter @antzinyopants for updates on his art. Visit his website, antzinyopants.com to purchase art prints and merchandise. Visit https://www.antzinyopants.shop/ his fashion website, to purchase apparel.

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