Mural Fest 2018

Felipe Ortiz

Cali, Colombia

The multicultural upbringing and travels between my native Colombia and United States has and continues to help me gain and understand a wider perspective in my artistic interests. From Colombia’s vibrant culture, colors, sounds and dense natural scenery, to the States’ vast landscape and fast-paced urban environments, there are multiple elements I can pick from each location and merge into the pictorial and self-idealistic vision I'd like to represent.

In recent years, I have explored and presented a variety of styles and themes in my paintings, which are based on three practices: observation, drawing, and composition techniques. These practices are often used by themselves or combined throughout my work. Observational skills are fundamental in all my creations, as I may take reference from the realistic views of my surroundings, capturing not only an aspect of realism, but also time and place. Drawing practices are the most effective way for me to capture my observational skills. There’s a drawing process involved in every painting, information I'm retaining while documenting my ideas. The compositions I design often deal with my current feeling and energy while painting a piece. Being in tune with myself helps me decide on color pallet and distribution of my surface. Whether it is a mathematical composition based on patterns, or a more intuitive approach, it often plays a big role in the initial moments of a painting.

Thematic variations include but are not limited to urban and industrial scenery, nature, abstracted geometry, expressive mark making, and a hybrid between all of these themes, which can define a more personal, unique and stylized painting. One of the purposes of mixing themes and styles is to show an alternative fusion of my interest, such as a cityscape interacting with a natural setting, while birds and vegetation invade the confined spaces of a structural formation. It is this juxtaposition of imagery that allows me to play with different levels of depth, creating almost an illusion that depicts an abstract arrangement based on realism. This may give the viewer a second opportunity to look closer and find details that may be camouflaged in the excitement of overlapping of layers. I invite the viewer to enjoy my art almost as a modern surrealist, where each element in the painting is carefully selected, investigating the possibilities of an imaginative view with in a world of associated imagery that lead up to your personal and open interpretation.