"These jewel-like paintings intuitively fuse different aesthetic traditions, folk art and old master, with natural grace and an uncanny quality that may be a species of magic." —American Arts Quarterly
I am honored to be participating in a group show “Making Her Mark: Art by Women” at the Meyer Gallery, Park City. Opening reception on August 30th from 6-9 pm during Park City Gallery Stroll. The show will hang until the last week of September.
My latest painting “The Peacemaker” will be on view. It is a portrait of a young woman making her mark by fighting for peace. She is crowned with the laurels of victory and poetry and in her hand are apple blossoms symbolizing renewal.
Spellbound is the first survey of the self-taught artist’s paintings. Over the past decade, Fatima Ronquillo has created a personal modern aesthetic by combining European old master techniques with a magical realism found in Early American Colonial and Latin American Art. Ronquillo presents an imagined world of personages in military or exotic costumes who confront viewers with an ambiguous gaze. These figures are often accompanied by mischievous cupids dressed as Mozartian pages or wild animals which are either spirit guides or inner demons. Often they are shown with mementos or ‘recuerdos’ such as the lover’s eye jewelry to demonstrate one of the many stages of love, from the bliss of the requited to the despair of the rejected. Alongside the recurring theme of love, lush flora and mysterious fauna offer a glimpse into a world of myth and theatre. These compositions marry traditional portraiture, often Set against pastoral and idyllic landscapes, with an underlying sense of drama and playfulness. Ronquillo’s paintings are visions of beauty and love which incite a mad enchantment to the heart and mind.
Fatima Ronquillo’s recent explorations in mythological studies influence her latest work, which is a continuation of her charming, classically inspired painting style. The Santa Fe artist borrows techniques and styles from European Old Masters, Spanish Colonial artists and other genres from the past; she then blends this Old World aesthetic with modern ideologies. Ronquillo often illustrates themes from literature, opera or theater through playful and witty narratives. Lately, epics and tales from Greek mythology have taken over her pre-conceived storylines.
For this year’s solo show, Ronquillo has created a series of paintings that are set on the fabled island of Arcadia, which in ancient Greek mythologies was an unspoiled utopia representing idyllic happiness. Ronquillo’s overarching theme through this body of work is the search for Arcadia and that unreachable idea of a perfect society. The journey begins with “The Cartographer,” whose central figure stands in front of an allegorical map of Arcadia. Other pieces in the show illustrate scenes from this paradise. In “Homecoming,” Hebe the goddess of youth and beauty offers a cup of ambrosia to a crowned eagle. Poised next to her on a stone ledge is a bowl filled with fruits and flowers of the earth, while an ideal landscape reminiscent of Baroque painter Claude Lorrain fills the background.
Local influence seeps into Ronquillo’s mythological subject matter in “The Wanderers,” where a young girl rides a buffalo through a New Mexican landscape, often referred to as the “land of enchantment.” The peregrine falcon and the American bison shown in this piece have symbolic meaning as both have recently rebounded from an endangered species status. “The preservation of wildlife is precarious,” says Ronquillo. “Perhaps our Arcadia ought to be one of a peaceable kingdom.”
Explore Ronquillo’s painted paradise on Friday evening, September 14that the opening reception for “Arcadia.”
I am very pleased and honored to announce my participation in a group show of wonderful artists at the Museum of Spanish Colonial Art in Santa Fe, New Mexico. “GenNext: Future So Bright” opens this Friday, May 4 and runs through November 25, 2018. Please come and celebrate the opening fiesta this Friday from 5:30 to 7:30 pm.
“Girl and Goat at the Summit” 40×30 inches, oil on panel. Private Collection.
“Crowned Nun with Marmoset” 30×24 inches, oil on canvas. Private Collection.
The Meyer Gallery in Park City, Utah presents a solo exhibition of paintings inspired by classical mythologies in Ovid’s Metapmorhoses. Please celebrate with us on opening night this Friday, February 23, 5-7pm.