Artist Statement

Art is a primordial need of expression by people in a particular place, at a given time.  I paint from here – Houston TX – about there – the vast intellectual inheritance left by the Maya in the lands from which I immigrated, and that I tap into for my artistic vocabulary. I’m a contemporary Latinx artist, who explores connections through space and time with a thematic distilled down to coexistence and connectivity: human to human, human to the planet & universe, and spirit to spirit. I grew up in a country where scarce resources were a given, immersion in nature the norm, and sustainability a way of life. Early in my art I abandoned oil paints and chemicals for water-based mediums, used recycled canvases and  incorporated materials with story/history into my art. I use painting, collage, printmaking and sculpture to express the interconnectedness of all that coexists in the planet, and the fragility that defines its systems today.

 

My vocabulary is abstract, distilling shapes of nature and free form feelings into dynamic lines and shapes that are non-figurative. I infuse energy and directionality into my paintings through color and gesture. I use rakes, natural brooms, painter’s tools, cleaning tools, house paints and painter’s tarp, elevating them to the stage and as an ode to the immigrant workers. I treat each work like an archeological site, in which materials have a DNA, honesty, a purpose and a provenance, they connect space and time, and can provide information to future conservators. Materials may include harvested rainwater from Hurricane Harvey, Salvadorean coffee ink, and pigment from original Maya Indigo plant seed.  Abstracted and imaginary symbology based on ancient glyphs and numeric notation appear as a connection to our shared intellectual past.  My work is abstract expressionism with a source, and it reflects the absolute conceptual and personal freedom that my new country has afforded me.

My collaborative work- with music & science, the brain and artificial intelligence -has opened new paths of expression through live painting performance. Being at the intersection of identity/nativist art and new media -which incorporates state of the art technology- is an exciting place of opportunity and fragility as an artist.  This form of art arose out of my intent towards the democratization of art: demystify contemporary art for all, use the platform of art to speak of social empathy, and to reach, include, and inspire the new generations of immigrants and Central American diaspora. I make art to connect and elevate people.

 

 

 

 |  Sawyer Gallery & Studios  |                                       |1819 Sawyer St | Houston | Tx | 77007 | 713.660.4567 | geraldinawise@gmail.com |