Juan Chawuk Connects With Latino Arts Gallery
Through his artwork,
Chawuk intends to “connect” the people in Chiapas,
who have fewer material possessions, with U.S. citizens, who have more
technological advancements. Numerous images portray Chawuk’s belief in an
unseen cosmic energy and universal consciousness that lies within each person,
regardless of birthplace, culture or upbringing. The predominate blues and
greens in his artwork symbolize the profound, infinite energy that he believes
coexists with nature.
installation titled La Vida (The Life)
covers the gallery wall and floor with an immense canvas. Displaying waves of
blue sea and sky where human figures float above the background, each figure in
the painting connects to an energy source through a cord, similar to an
umbilical cord. Viewers are invited to step on the floor canvas, “connect”
themselves to one of the vibrant cords coming from the installation and capture
this connection on film. This verifies the individual’s “freedom to fly above
any preconceived beliefs locked inside the individual person,” creating a scene
where everyone enjoys a collective imagination and inspiration.
painting pays homage to Botticelli’s The
Birth of Venus. Chawuk envisions a huge seashell as a time machine where an
older, wiser nude with flowing silver hair arrives on shore in The Time Triumph.His painting encourages viewers to reflect on age as eternally
beautiful, a natural process to be welcomed, because everyone in all cultures
experiences growing older.
At a reception from 5 to 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 14, Chawuk will talk about his belief that “the human being needs to go beyond religion and physical matter to find the higher energy that is necessary to connect us all.” At 7:30 p.m., the ensemble La Catrina Quartet, which has performed at Carnegie Hall, will complete the evening with classical and Latin music.