Alfredo Fernández y González Biography

Artist's Statement

I started to paint without any talent at age 23 in 1979. I began as a child would, as we all do when starting something for the first time but I was actually well past childhood. It was very frustrating to realize again and again that I couldn’t paint things as I imagined them to be. After filling a few notebooks, I would stop sketching for several months, only to come back later and try again and again. For what should have been a couple of years’ worth of work, I needed eight. Some notebooks and some years later, I thought that perhaps I could be taught how to draw, so I registered in a private art school which I attended for a week. During those few days, I was instructed how to represent aspects of things that I was not interested in. But I did not want to measure or see reality through a grid. The world I was visualizing had colors and in art classes I had to draw in black and white. Consequently, I found myself still without a clear direction. Then I looked around for another way of expressing myself. In the late 80s, when at last the images of my inner world began to emerge, accepting those images established my definite relationship with painting and I started to communicate with myself through my art. Since then, I have not stopped. Then my approach to art slowly started to change. I began to paint in the streets and with colors; without measuring, without proportions. In fact this is the way the human eye sees things. In other words, our own distortions and prejudices make us perceive reality in a way that may not correspond to the actual appearance of things. When looking at the same thing, each person perceives it in a different way. That is because each person’s reality is unique but incomplete and therefore our vision is limited, partial and subjective. So years later, the lack of proportion in my work that irritated me at first now constitutes the key element of my style and of my personal way of seeing things and communicating them. Colour is probably the second key element; evidently not preconceived either but learned by mixing sensations with colors in a very subjective manner. This is something we all do subconsciously many times every day. Regarding the subjects of my work, I feel they share common elements. Whether they are portraits, nudes, architectural forms, dreams or abstract concepts painted on walls, they are saturated with what I call Imprints; references which may be historical, cultural, genetic or personal experiences. The infinite combination of imprints is what makes each of us a unique individual. Irrespective of race or culture, an intense connection with an artist and his work, be it immediate or studied is a mirrored reflection of those imprints we have in common. That is why my art is a magic mirror. Berlin, 2017