Gonzalo Fuenmayor

(Born in 1977 Barranquila, Colombia; Lives and works in Miami, FL)

I had a plan when I came to Anderson Ranch and I knew that it would change and shift. I had a plan that by the end of the residency I needed to have so many drawings ,so many sculptures, so many ceramics and so forth made. About half way through I realized the plan wouldn’t allow for space so I adjusted everything to make it as organic as possible. My mindset now is, time at the residency is so valuable, I’m expecting everything I’ve thought about or explored at this moment, the experiences, to blossom in two to three years. I’ve been opening new windows and hopefully, after the residency, I’ll be able to explore them in depth. 

I feel myself as a painter and that I’m exploring painting, ironically, with a medium that’s associated with drawing. When I was doing the chandeliers, they were, at first, hyper realistic. You had this relationship with the object, very dramatic, but definitely describing the figure. As the work has progressed I believe they’ve become more abstract in the sense that once you get up close to the drawing, they feel very fluid, you’re not concerned with rendering, you’re just exploring gestures. If you walk back, the drawing seems hyper realistic again. There’s a funny space and a physical space with the intention of the mark making in the drawings. You’re taken aback by the dramatic nature of what I’m drawing and that sort of camouflages the other side that opens up once you’re close to the drawing. 

I wanted to expand my own drawing vocabulary, allowing myself to explore with different modes of mark making in the “Palindrome” exhibition. For me, the challenge in making the smaller drawings was “can I make an important, striking work without scale” because I have two monumental drawings in the show. Just by their mere size, you’re taken aback,” wow, this is greater than me”. It’s a room and scene where you can float in and out. So my intention for the small pieces was, “can I really put everything into a more intimate scale and see what the mark making process could suggest”. This was in the back of my mind in making the 16 or 18 small drawings with no precise idea beforehand of what the drawings should be.

–Conversation on February 23, 2021

Listen to our conversation here:


Selected Image from the Collection:

Fuenmayor, Gonzalo, Exotic Trust, 2020, Charcoal and spray paint on paper, 30 x 22 1/2 in.