By Raul Mariaca Dalence
In December 2015, I spent two weeks in New York during the exhibition of my paintings at Agora Gallery. I had contributed six of my paintings to the group exhibition, Emerging Visions, along with other artists from all over the world.
My wife, Christiane, and I stayed at the Leo House in Chelsea, New York, which was very convenient to the gallery. We spent the majority of our days outside and exploring the city as much as possible. Luckily, we have an uncle who lives in New York and was kind enough to show us around and take us to a few wonderful restaurants. We also visited the Metropolitan Museum of Art and were delighted to see all of the Impressionist and Fauvist art work being shown there. My wife and I enjoy listening to jazz music and while exploring places like Birdland and Blue Note, we discovered many talented musicians performing live.
Line, a raised outdoor walking path stretching over a mile throughout Chelsea. We even were fortunate enough to meet somebody who was singing jazz standards in the magical outdoor atmosphere!
After my time in New York City, I came to find that it is an extremely convenient city and one can find just about anything at any time. While I was in the city that never sleeps I spent time in one of the busiest areas of the city, Broadway. I got to see the musical “An American in Paris,” which was beautiful. As we sat in the theater we were amazed at all of the marvelous musical pieces we were able to hear. It made me remember watching the original film made in the 1960s when Gene Kelly sang the Gershwin compositions. These musical, theatrical, and dance experiences have been of great influence to my work.
Some years ago, I had the occasion to assist at a show for The Alvin Ailey ballet in NY, and that is when I became fascinated with modern dance. The colors and movement from the dance still inspire many of my paintings. I painted a representational series of this marvelous art of dance, which I exhibited in 2013 here in Fribourg, Switzerland.
One of the paintings that I exhibited in the Agora Gallery this year was actually from a ballet performance called “Revelation”. It represented flying birds mimicked by the dancers. New York had a major impact on the more recent focus of my work because The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater of New York has become so essential and continues to be a source of inspiration for my pictorial representation of modern dance.
And although the dance in New York has made me find comfort in such a large and hectic city, it has been Angela and her wonderful team at the Agora Gallery that made it possible for me to come to New York and present my artwork in the best way possible.