Alvaro Labanino and Miguel Saludes
Opens: March 3rd • 6pm
Closes: March 25th • 5pm
General Admission: $1 entry donation
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Thoughts; often in our daily lives we become absorbed in them. How often do they sneak up on us from dawn to dusk, accompanying us to and from work, and always back in our space again? They’re among our most loyal of companions, our truest of friends, and our bitterest of enemies. How they bless us in the shape of sweet memories, transporting us to the calm stupor of better days past. But how they burden us with the sour taste of painful memories, insecurities, fears, and preoccupations, which seem to come at us in greater numbers and intensity to surely drown us in sorrow and pain. If we’re to believe in Decarte’s “cogito, ergo sum” (“I think, therefore I am”), then we might postulate, as well, that our individual nature, and the essence of our existence, is defined by these very thoughts. So what are we to do with these unwelcome guests? To push them away would result in a temporary relief, but how long can we suppress them below the surface, and live on lying to ourselves, pretending that they’re not there? To face them we need great courage and strength, but once we’re able to affront them, embrace them, and harness their power, we may witness brilliance.
Vincent Van Gogh infamously said that “the sadness will last forever,” moments before succumbing to his controversial death. Here was a man who lived passionately and painfully, alone with his thoughts, and ultimately suffered greatly for it. What went on in his head, we will never know for sure, but fortunately for us, he left us a legacy of intense and beautiful works and writings that reflect the inner workings of an active and introspective mind. Perhaps, if Van Gogh had been content, having led a peaceful life, having encountered the love, success, and fulfillment he sought, having lived a full life, maybe then he wouldn’t have regaled us with such beauty and intensity as he did in his short and tumultuous existence. The same must be observed in other greats of Art History. How much different would the ouvres by Francis Bacon, Frida Kahlo, Edvard Munch, and Egon Schiele, among numerous others, have been, had they not tapped into their troubled thoughts for continuous inspiration.
The exhibition Obsessive Ruminations ties together the works of artists Alvaro Labanino and Miguel Saludes, brought together by bonds of friendship and comradery that take them back to their adolescence, when they first met. Their link is further bolstered by a common passion for the medium of painting which they both practice, as well as an appreciation for its rich history. And perhaps, at its core, Labanino and Saludes are joined by their mutual understanding of how daily introspection ultimately affects and defines their life and work.
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