Short Bio I started taking art in college back in 1985 which culminated in me getting a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1990. In 1997 I started my MFA and graduated in 2000. If I start counting since 1985 then you could say I have been an artist for the last 35 years. I pretty much have been at it non-stop for all those years, with a few breaks here and there but usually no more than a month or two. The reality is that I have been an artist all my life. I started making art at a very young age back in Venezuela where I grew up. My mother is an artist, both my sisters studied graphic design and are artists. Art was something that we did all the time, a form of play and entertainment, and still is today.
Made in USA / Made in China Series is my most recent series of paintings and are explorations of color using a variety of materials and equipment. These are mixed media paintings done on small canvases and plywood using a laser cutter machine, acrylic paints, masking tape, matte medium, as well as other materials. The paintings are approximately 14 x 14 or 14 x 16 inches or smaller and are very intimate in nature. These paintings are also explorations in the interaction of color as well as three-dimensionality. While working on this series in China two years ago, an artist colleague, Shen Feng, suggested me using traditional Chinese window patterns as well as the circular patterns I had been using. This new variation is what I worked on during my 7 week art residency in China two summers ago and continued to work on today. The work has been influenced in part by the work of Carlos Cruz Diez and Jesus Soto, my Latino heritage, as well as a recent trips to China.
Banderas is a large format series of paintings that deal with the symbolism found in different local, national and international flags (American, Mexican, Venezuelan, etc.). The images also deal with sociopolitical issues and are meant to create discussion and provoked questions. There is also a visual fusion of some flags to create new flags and in turn new symbols, images, and meanings. The main purpose of the Banderas series, besides personal artistic expression, is to make people think about issues related to diversity, racism, political power, abuse of power, human rights, immigration, just to name a few. The paintings and actual flags are also meant to expose viewers to different points of view
Continuity is basically a set of contemporary portraits of members of my family, people in American history and Latin American history, and people in American, Venezuelan, and Mexican popular culture. I consider this series a type of installation, where the paintings can be hung side by side touching each other creating a continuous viewing of the images. The paintings can also be hung on top of each other and also placed on the floor, or hung in a more conventional manner. In the past I have also done political or family groupings.
Line, Color, and Texture is a series of experimental mid-size non-representational paintings dealing with a variety of textures and color, using lines or stripes to unified the two. I have also used materials such as rainbow yarn and metal wire to created additional small lines.
I work with acrylics on canvas using a hard edge approach were I do not blend any colors. My process is very similar to the process that Roy Lichtenstein used, however the end result is very different. One striking characteristic of my paintings is the use of vibrant colors which I believe comes from growing up in Maracaibo, Venezuela and being exposed to the colors of the city, to Venezuelan folk art, to the work of the Guajiro Indians and their tapestries, as well as the work of Venezuelan contemporary masters like Carlos Cruz Diez and the late Jesus Soto. Viewers have found my paintings to be dynamic, vibrant, funny, and surrealistic at times, and with a Pop-Art/Op-Art quality to them at other times, all of which are readings that I want the work to have.
Finally for the last 20 years I have taught a variety of studio courses like 2D Design, Color Theory, Color and Composition, Drawing I and II, Drawing with Mixed Media, Painting I, II, and III, and 3D Design as well as Art Appreciation and Cultural Diversity in American Art at colleges and universities like Lone Star College, Houston Community College, Texas Tech University, University of Georgia, Gainesville State College, University of North Georgia, Georgia College and State University and Liaocheng University.