The Neo-Surrealism of Gustavo Posadas

by Claudia Moscovici
Surrealist art often combines the best of both worlds: a “realistic” representation of objects, which requires talent and technical skill, and a fantastic imagination that takes us past the threshold of the rational and the knowable, so we can explore the mysteries of the subconscious. Surrealism offers an escape from the real world yet also probes the depths of a perhaps truer and deeper reality: the reality of human desire; of our dreams and nightmares; of our hopes and fears; of our collective past and a visionary future we can barely imagine. Surrealism can also be playful: at least in the hands of an artist like MirĂ³ as well as in Magritte‘s linguistic imagination, whose paintings are filled with visual puns and paradoxes.
The contemporary Mexican artist  Gustavo C. Posadas continues the Surrealist tradition today. Calling himself a Neo-Surrealist, Posadas has been a visual artist since 1977. He’s also a curator for art exhibits and the Director of ACCORDarte Gallery and Grupo Centro 10. His paintings have a haunting beauty, revealing a fascination with the human figure in its most elemental representation. They often resemble women–without hair, clothes or makeup–beautiful in an atavistic manner. They seem the creatures of the past or figments of some future civilization, somehow bypassing the present. Posadas uses vivid colors, immediately capturing our attention, to draw us into the paintings which we can begin to decode only if we use our feelings and imaginations more so than our eyes.
Posadas’s paintings are also conceptual, as Surrealist art tends to be, provoking viewers to think about the concepts of time, individuality (his figures often overlap, in a provocative and strange symbiosis) and emotion itself. Some of his figures resemble masks, whose expressions are trapped in silent screams that mimic our emotions, exploring the limits and limitations of our powers of communication.


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