Through his artistic practice the Spanish born American artist José Lerma is exploring the domains of painting primarily in regards to the historical representation and autobiographical elements. By appropriating found materials the artist is extending or rather translating the painterly process to elaborate spatial installations, and produces artworks saturated with different layers coming from history and personal mythology. Lerma incorporates research and an innovative treatment of inherited painterly patterns especially when it comes to portraiture.
The artist smoothly composes each artwork by delivering depictions that are at the same time reminiscent of expressionist gestures and collages. In doing so, Lerma constructs visually intriguing imagery that deconstructs contemporary desire for a beautiful painting.
Lerma earned his BA in 1994 at Tulane University in New Orleans, and from 2001 to 2002 he received his MA and MFA in Painting University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Featured image: José Lerma - Civil War Cockades, 2017 (detail). Acrylic on canvas. 78 × 78 in. 198.1 × 198.1 cm. Photo courtesy Kavi Gupta Gallery