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Artist Name

Jorge Gonzalez

Born: 1962

Hometown: Santa Clara

Based in: Miami

Jorge R. Gonzalez

Artist Statement

Why I started, what has and still inspires me, and why I’m in this Road.

Like most visual artists throughout my adolescence, I enjoyed doodling, most classes in school tended to be rather boring to me, which led to my using the side of most composition papers to draw and daydream. As I was entering my high school years, I was inclined to become an airplane mechanic causing my three years of high school to be totally focused on that endeavor.
After graduating from high school, I applied my energy into obtaining a degree in the optical field, but halfway through a certain spark of passion awoke in me towards the arts. I started with drawing, which led to printmaking, then photography and at the end of my studies, years down the road I obtained a degree in sculpture. Photography and painting were also my interests, but sculpture was my true calling.
After graduation from the university, I started my studio and commenced my career in the Fine Arts in what I thought would be my life for years to come. But life tends to throw you curves and things sometimes don’t go as planned. And this is what happened to me, a life changing event or series of events drew me away from the arts for many years. Raising a family and providing for them became number one in my focus and heart, making the arts secondary placing them on a very small almost nonexistent back burner. It would be almost 20 years before I would return to thinking of and participate in anything related to the arts. Photography became my medium of choice as I started my path once again to what was once my passion. Then a set of events and life choices led me completely back to the arts and a true desire to create and communicate to others through my work was rekindled.
I have been influenced by many artists for a variety of reasons. These artists have works that attract me to them in special ways. I have many favorite pieces, but I tend to have a few favorites such Michelangelo’s Moses because of the energy that he was able to bring out of the stone and the size which conveys a true sense of the impact that this man has had on human history, thought and beliefs. Picasso’s Guernica because of the expansive yet intimate capture of a tragedy in his homeland. Starry Night by Van Gogh because of the visual movement that he was able create on a two-dimensional medium. Karel Appel because of the rawness of color and greater than life scale of the pieces. Lastly Cristo and Jeanne-Claude’s many works because of the process of creation and conceptual aspects which totally intrigued me about their work.
I don’t have a preferred medium which in a way brings more freedom to my creative process. I will use any medium that allows me to convey what my goal for the piece will be, with understanding I consider myself a multi-media artist. I don’t limit myself to just painting or sculpture or photography but any of those disciplines that will carry my thoughts to conclusion, will be used by me. I have totally navigated away from photography, finding it to lack the freedom of expression that a canvas or a three-dimensional piece can give. Currently, I have navigated towards painting on canvas with acrylics, because it allows me more access to work in a series. I have limited my canvas size for the current series, since the messages in these works have a more intimate, almost diary page aspect to them.
My working process tends to be as follows: First a feeling or inspiration comes to me from many aspects of my life, then I will work on a plan to bring the idea/message to the final result. Sometimes it will be a series of works which allows me to explore the original inspiration to a point of coming to a full conclusion. I will look for inspiration in my daily life, childhood memories, religious experiences, politics and current events.
My themes tend to rest on life as a major component, I don’t strive to just place paint down or carve a piece of wood out for the sake of the process, but I strive to point out moments, places, things and feelings related to our existence in this beautiful planet. Communication is always the goal in my work. Religious iconography is to be found in many of my pieces, since my beliefs and life rest strongly on my experiences in Christ, but at the same time I don’t believe in using my work to preach to the viewer what my beliefs are. My work might have certain religious elements but there is a place for preaching and a painting on a wall is not what I feel is the correct venue for it.
One of my recurring messages in my work is to emphasize the shortness of our existence, life is but a vapor, and the planning and worrying about tomorrow should not be our focus because tomorrow will bring those events on its own, but to live in the moment we are in, while loving our fellow man should be our true goal. My years as a minister, missionary and translator in the Apostolic Pentecostal Church guides me to express in my work certain hope, joy and faith. Through my work I now aim to express more joyful and colorful messages, but of course as long as the inspiration allows me.

 



More About Jorge Gonzalez

Question IconWhat inspires you?

Nature, Politics, Family, Church and overall life. I seem to gravitate lately towards memories of my childhood, the family members from it and the intimate moments that I had. My subject matter varies but it seems to orbit intimate memories for the most part.

Question IconDescribe your creative process.

Usually I'll start from an inspiration which will turn into how to bring it to fruition. I also sometimes will see a color that I want to utilize, this will lead me to working it into a final piece.

Question IconWhat are 3 words that best describe your work?

Colorful, Intimate and Aggressive.

Question IconWho are some artists that have influenced your work?

Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Karel Appel, Van Gogh, Michelangelo, Picasso and many more. I don't focus on any one in particular but obtain a bit of influence from many.

Question IconWhat is the most important tool when creating your work?

My eyes! Everything else comes from that.

Question IconWhat is the best piece of advice you have been given?

I can teach you the process but not talent.

Question IconWhere do you go for inspiration?

My everyday life, moments with the family, trips, nature and current events. I find inspiration in many places and most of the time I'm not searching for it. I don't search for inspiration it just comes to me.


Credentials

Education

Florida International University

United States of America, 1988

Miami Dade College

United States of America, 1986

Miami Dade College Study Abroad Program

United Kingdom, 1984

George T. Baker Aviation School

United States of America, 1980

Awards

Artist in Residence, Altos de Chavon School of Design

1987

Phi Theta Kappa Outstanding Student in Art

1985

Exhibitions

Artist in the Spotlight at the Seminole Theater

United States of America, 2023

Homestead Center for the Arts

United States of America, 2022

Homestead Center for the Arts

United States of America, 2021

Florida International University BFA Exhibition at the Frost Art Museum

United States of America, 1988

Artists in Residence at Altos de Chavon

Dominican Republic, 1987

29th Annual Hortt Juried Exhibition at Fort Lauderdale Museum of Art

United States of America, 1987

Group Show Nottingham Place

United Kingdom, 1984