Stored somewhere, in an old shoebox, there's a pile of old photographs that retain some random sliver of our lives. For Manny Fabregas—the next artist to take on the new Hyde Street Gallery this month—these lost and forgotten images seem to hold something beyond his imagination, something that merits a closer look. The arbitrary images that might seem worthless in a digital age are the very snapshots of people and things that he values most as source inspiration. Fabregas paints in traditional form of oil on canvas, but his works vary in social concept and format. The works draw from a serious (and not so serious) source of visual stimulus, mainly a huge drawer full of vintage photos found at old estate sales, flea markets and family garage sales. "Every photograph serves as visual groundwork for an intriguing narrative," says Fabregas. "It's the mysterious journey of the vintage photograph that constitutes the focus of my paintings." That's about all there is to it. Oh yeah, and he's ridiculously talented. His new works show May 8 at San Francisco's Hyde Street Gallery.


"Dive Boat"

"Zhong Lou" and "Chistina in '74"

"Tank Diver" and Bus & Lady"