I moved away from my home country, Venezuela, nearly two decades ago. Expecting some degree of assimilation after all this time away from home, I find myself instead in an almost constant struggle with the cultural unfamiliarity of North America. Yet Venezuela has also become unfamiliar as a beloved, yet distant place of unclear feelings and memories. The ambivalence created by living in one place, yet longing for another gives birth to the tension I desire in my work.
Painting provides a tangible place for the mediation of these conflicting histories. During the act of painting memories can exist, vanish, and then reappear, allowing for a path that hopefully results in a spatial and emotional equilibrium. I am always cognizant of profound rifts and the polarization occurring in my own country and attempt to confront the realities (and memories) of chaos and conflict. My subject matter is the urban agglomerations of my hometown. Aggregates materializing from painting such as tarpaper or dark surfaces bring forward (perhaps even awkwardly confront) the conflict that is today’s political reality in Venezuela. There is very little that I can practically do other than address a few profound contradictions⎯the conflict of political and social realities. My work then becomes a mirror of sorts of the history of the use of visual, social and even architectural structures to express the political and social truth that represents the chaotic visual and social reality of the Caracas’s landscape so deeply embedded within me.