This painting was acquired directly from Omar in his studio at San Juan, Puerto Rico. A couple of days after he traveled to Chicago University to start his MFA.
The artist requested me to show the piece in a exhibition called "Mirando Al Sur" in Matadero Art Gallery on August 7, 2014 (San Juan, Puerto Rico). This artwork and other paintings and sculptures where inspired by his travelings to the south of Puerto Rico where he noticed empty spaces, discarded architecture and land abandonment.
Artist Statement For The Exhibition
The path to the south can be seen as the road to the truth and being surrounded by light, transferring its meaning to the intelligence demanded by knowledge. This series of paintings dominated by dense and colorful landscapes, are the product of a creative process where a constant quest is visible and it’s even more profound in the expression of the plastic language.
These images represent landscapes of specific locations in the south of Puerto Rico, a continuous critique to the vices of construction with its promises of big castles; expressing themselves as a false notion of progress. Some enigmatic details that are distinguished in these paintings are the empty and deteriorated billboards, abandoned and hided between weeds. This visual element is added to the canvas with collage and fine pieces of used wood over a surface that have been worked with oil paint, acrylic and spray paint.
On the other hand the element of the point like a mark or signal, simulates the apparition of moons, raising questions about aspects related to the supernatural. This phase can be related to the act of confronting uncertainty about the unknown in the creative process of inventing new forms of expression.
The red color in the series carries a visual power related to political aspects of the left wing and the act of protesting inside the liberties of expression. The south in this particular case is linked to the artist’s relations with hard musical genres like dessert rock, doom, stoner and sludge. All of these genres where also born in the south of the United States.
A plastic and visual connection is established and one thing brings the other. The musical pastime of the artist sites him in a path and landscapes that are assimilated, resulting in a series of works with a biographical weight in the sense of moving from one place to the other. A space serves with its purpose to inhabit another one with a new purpose.