The 1968 Chevrolet El Camino. My first car, my first love. Practical yet sexy. Perfect for a surfboard in the back. The quintessential California car. Chevrolet made the El Camino in response to the success of Ford’s Ranchero. Ford Australia was the first company to make a coupé utility vehicle as a result of a letter they received from the wife of a farmer in 1932. The letter asked for a vehicle suitable to go to church in on Sunday and also carry pigs to market on Monday. By 1959, Chevrolet released the first El Camino. I knew it was the perfect car for me. I found one online when I was 14, and bought it from a nice man in Oregon. I had it fixed up so by the time I got my driver’s license at 15, I could drive myself to school in it. I even passed my driver’s test in New Mexico because of the younger legal driving age than California. I was eager to get on the road. Once a licensed driver, finding other El Caminos on the streets of LA, and around the world, became an obsession of mine. This installation is a result of that obsession. It was first shown in Miami at the M Building in Wynwood in 2014.
Arielle Pytka is an American and French multi media artist. She resides between Los Angeles and Paris. Her artwork has appeared in multiple solo and group exhibitions in Los Angeles, Miami, Paris, London, and Indonesia. Her exhibitions have featured a wide range of mediums including painting, photography, sculpture, video, and an automobile amongst others. She has worked professionally as a lighting and drum technician for touring bands in the United States, Europe, and Australia. Pytka has also worked as a motion picture cinematographer leading her to direct her own projects. Arielle now directs music videos and commercials. An avid surfer and sailor, she was a part of the Roxy/Quicksilver team and has completed three transatlantic crossings crewing on vintage and modern sailboats. Her sailing team has won the 2015 Panerai Transatlantic Classique, Les Voiles De Saint Tropez, 2008 Falmouth Pendennis Cup, Fife Regatta in Scotland, and many others. Arielle is now working out of her studio in Venice Beach, California and still actively works as race crew on several sailboats for various regattas.