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Opening Reception: Saturday, June 24th, 6-8 pm

ARNALDO ROCHE | Recent Works

June 24 - August 5, 2006

Arnaldo Roche (Puerto Rico, 1955) has developed a reputation as one of the most gifted artists of his generation. His paintings combine an earthy, almost claustrophobic sense of the physical world, with powerful psychological undercurrents.

Self-Portraiture is an important aspect of Roche's art. Roche has painted himself as a black man with blue eyes (he is not black nor does he have blue eyes), he has painted himself on fire, he has even painted himself with multiple heads, free falling through space. Roche's paintings suggest that identity is complex: a combination of personal histories and public personas.

Roche's working methods include: wrapping the bodies of assistants in canvas and making frottage-like rubbings of their anatomy, impressing rope, lace, and tropical plants to his painting's surface, and chiseling paint from the canvas. His choice of high key colors, and thick, textured brushstrokes, reinforce the electrifying emotional intensity of the work. No matter how volcanic the physical presence in his art, one feels the isolation and vulnerability of a person who is aware that his life is circumscribed by the darker realities of his own history. Painting allows Roche to express his feelings of isolation, while simultaneously reaching out to the viewer.

The artist's many exhibitions include: Hispanic Art in the United States, Corcoran Gallery, Washington D.C., 1987; Latin American Art of the Twentieth Century, Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1990; El Humor y La Rabia, Fundación Caixa Catalunya, Barcelona, 2001.

Arnaldo Roche's paintings can be found in public collections worldwide, including: The Art Institute of Chicago, Illinois; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Fundación Cultural de México, México D.F.; and Museo de Bellas Artes, Caracas, Venezuela.

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