Gustavo Blanco-Uribe was born Venezuelan, and turned a versatile artist that has developed a multidisciplinary career in decoration, fashion and fine arts.
After years of studies in fine arts, illustration and decorative arts, in Altos de Chavón School of Design and then at Parsons, started his career in New York painting for decoration projects and window display for high-end brands such as: Bergdorf Goodman, Harry Winston, Ralph Lauren, Fred Leighton, Van Cleef & Arpels, Bardin Palomo, as a designer for great scale benefit events like “The Young Lions” New York Public library and opened a Studio in DUMBO (Brooklyn – NY).
Following his profound sensibility to beauty and intrinsic need to decorate the world around him, moved to Europe to further develop his skills in the decorative arts. Continued his career as responsible for the visuals of world renown fashion brands like Michael Kors and CH Carolina Herrera.
Living in different continents and experiencing diverse cultures has clearly influenced his art. A calling born to growing up surrounded by bright colors, nature, exoticism, rhythm, matured through studies of fine arts, illustration and decorative arts, and consolidated with sophistication by the multiple experiences accumulated on travels to Asia, Europe, Africa and America.
The multidisciplinary experience in fashion and decoration has clearly marked his work as an artist.
Initiated in artistic endeavors by working on his art applied to visual merchandising, display and set decoration. His early paintings render theatrical drama through the strong contrast of the use of flat colors to create light and shadow, playing with the contour of figures and what surrounds it, creating a geometric composition that resembles the Art Deco, following the grandiloquent scenes and majestic figures of Tamara Lempica.
Color is omnipresent from his beginnings, and it has been the spark of evolution. His work has become more focused bringing about the use of flat color to create silhouettes, with absence of light and shadow. Clearly unafraid of color, influenced by Rothko’s latest works in the use of flat and brilliant colors, has brought simplification to his work with the study and use of color as maximum expression.
He applies color utilizing a variety of techniques to enhance something specific. To Blanco-Uribe, each technique brings about a different color sensibility. Print contributes a nourishing texture that flat color doesn’t, a saturation that the stroke will never give. This allows him to go from saturation, to creating nuance effects.
The patterns and decorating motifs inherent to his work, denote his experience in working with textiles, from which he adopted its imagery and the conversion of shapes into patterns. His travels to India and Africa are continuous grounds for inspiration and have reinforced the use of patterns and color in his work. Repetition, in manifold guises, is a key feature of his practice.
From fashion he reinforced the strength of color-mix and contrast, selectiveness, the concept that less is more and accessories make a difference. As well as an enhanced sensibility, acute vision towards surroundings, and the use of provocative color that exudes eroticism.
All throughout his work there is the use of flat backgrounds without perspective. Never partial to using shadowing as a means to create volume, introduced a subtle drawing in place of light to impart a sense of perspective, depth, mass and substance to spaces. The lines give that depth illusion. Subtle lines serve as a tool for ambience creation or parallel scenes in a space.
His creative character is dominated by his ability to see beyond a shadow, form and reflection of things in his surroundings. From a predetermined image, he brings out another figure that is not there at first sight, hidden from the naked eye.
Parallel spaces, contrast, abstraction, color, movement of the figure, structure, lines, superimposing, are essentials characteristics of his work
Daring, audacities, boldness, risqué, color, memories and vision are words that describe his work. An impulse to record the world is thus only part of what fuels his art activity.
Gustavo Blanco-Uribe’s work is the only window that exposes his private environment, taking us to a vibrant colored world enveloped in equilibrium, harmony and sensuality. The detailing is crucial, to a discerning sartorial scrutiny.
Currently he lives in Madrid, solely dedicated to art, where he opened a Studio and continuously nurtures his vocation for the arts participating in workshops and seminars as a member of Circulo de Bellas Artes and Amigos del Reina Sofia Museum.
Has participated in individual exhibitions in US and Venezuela and collective exhibitions in New York, Madrid and Caracas. This year he has been selected to participate in the VII Edition of the Florence Biennale, Biennale Internazionale dell’Arte Contemporanea.
About the Embody’s exhibition:
Embody exhibition will present a series of oil and mixed media work that represents Blanco-Uribe’s sensibility and acute vision towards surroundings.
His oils on canvas with juxtaposed colors, absent silhouettes, architectural motifs, patterned shapes, daring, bold color combinations give his work an unique personality. A mix of forms and figures, allows him to represent the same concept in an alternate manner, like “Salade de Fruit” on its analogy of female and male with fruits.
His mixed media captures much more than anecdotal scenes. Overlapping silhouettes with shapes, patterns and strokes in vibrant colors, creates a composition where the negative space plays with images on the photo, creating hidden scenes within others clearly seen.
Of less interest than the question of where these enigmatic forms may have originated – whether in something as familiar as a plastic water bottle or whether as visualizations of un-nameable fears and anxiety – is the expressive affect they generate.
Representing daily life as he sees it, perceives it, with the sensibility to appreciate the small details, driving the spectator to see beyond the naked eye, beyond what is evident at first sight in his environment.
Given the compelling beauty and formal inventiveness of much of his art, there was the need to place the oeuvre in an appropriate framework. Resorts to installation to incorporate each piece into the space or vice versa, bringing the patterns, motifs, and colors into the surroundings.