Born in Cuba/Lives and Works in Miami
Carminho Lusitana, 2016
Size: 36” x 24”
Medium: Collage on Canvas
Carminho Lusitana combines the portraiture of a contemporary Fado Singer-songwriter Carminho, with elements that allude to Fado in a more general sense. The cobblestones of Lisbon (considered to be the birthplace of this genre), the Guitarra Portuguesa, the azulejo tiles, all wish to captivate the viewer and invite the imagination to be transported… almost lured into a Portuguese voyage of sorts. Iron fences and flowers remind us of a country and a music that is characterized by poetry and drama, aspects that permeate the Portuguese culture which is that of mariners with hearts as deep and enchanting as the sea itself. I lived in Portugal for five years, and chose my favorite Fado singer as the subject matter for this piece.
If I were to describe what I do from the surface, from a practical perspective, I’d recur to the words we find in the definition of collage: cutting, layering, pasting. These are gestures, descriptions of the process. But to me, collage is much more than that. It’s a personal choice in art medium that reveals who I am today and the personal history that has brought me to the present time.
It is said that resistance to being dominated was a key factor in driving the evolutionary emergence of human consciousness, language, kinship and social organization, and I am a firm believer of this truth… I have lived this truth. This belief permeates what I do as an artist and it’s at the core of my evolution as such.
Collage allows me to gather and organize disparate elements found in magazines, books or other printed media, to present a unified work of art. It’s a lot like life, that presents us with fresh and new possibilities every single day, while it’s our job to choose and perform, while these components work together to make it ours, our life, and thus be co-creators in this already created universe.
Every day, without them knowing it, I choose to work with the greatest publishers, the most superb designers, the most diverse models… an infinite world of pleasure where I submerge myself through collage.
Although two-dimensional, don’t fool yourself… these collages aren’t silent. They are immensely vocal, for they express my personal freedom.