Panorama Latinoamericano

Superb talents and finely honed techniques unite the widely varied personal statements featured in “Panorama Latinoamericano,” the new exhibition of paintings and sculpture at ArtSpace/Virginia Miller Galleries.

Two paintings by the Mexican master Francisco Toledo are in the exhibition, along with works by thirteen mid-career artists from Argentina, Colombia, Cuba, Guatemala, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and Venezuela.

Generally viewed as Mexico’s greatest living artist, Toledo’s two works are watercolors, one dated 1965 and the other probably from the same period. The 1965 work depicts several of his characteristic figures with the heads of birds in a room; the latter includes his cubistic, segmented ox, birds, cat and standing figure.

“The others in the exhibition are solid mid-career artists with strong records of exhibitions, who stand on the brink of becoming well-known,” said gallery owner Virginia Miller.

“Take Ricardo Mazal, for example–he’s had one-person exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Mexico City; at MARCO, the Contemporary Art Museum in Monterrey, and at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Scottsdale, Arizona. And Maria Gamundi has created two dozen site-specific works, mostly outdoor bronze sculpture.”

Nine of the mid-career artists focus on the human figure, ranging from the magic realism of Alfredo Arcia‘s theatrical scenes to the sensual women in paintings by Marco Tulio and Marcello Zampetti. Lifelike women in languid poses also are the subject of bronze sculpture by Maria Gamundi.

Humberto Castro‘s new series of ethereal paintings and drawings frequently use people or birds in flight to represent the concept of freedom, a common theme for this Cuban-born artist. Witty, surreal figures in improbable situations are the subjects of the miniature paintings of Marianela de la Hoz.

 Mateo Argüelles Pitt‘s painted panel juxtaposes figures with plants in a mosaic-like pattern. Moises Barrios paints reflections of Banana Republic showroom windows, a reference to his Central American homeland, Guatemala.

Also in the exhibition are large abstract works by two painters, Michelle Concepción and Ricardo Mazal; and an abstract sculpture by Melquiades, a leading Puerto Rican artist who prefers to use only one name. Another sculpture is by Linda Behar, whose imaginative houses incorporate hand-cast glass elements.

Rounding out the exhibition are classical still lifes of tropical fruit by Edgar Soberón.

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