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 Joe Ramiro Garcia  (21st century)

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Lived/Active: United States      Known for: painting-whimsical figures and toys

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Ad Code: 4
Joe Ramiro Garcia
Country Living
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
Biography from LewAllen Galleries:
The whimsical figures and toys in Joe Ramiro Garcia’s playfully provocative oil-and-alkyd paintings are intended to animate a space that seems at once familiar and real while also being cartoon-like, vaguely unsettling and ultimately mysterious. Familiar characters and everyday objects – not to mention frequent art historical references – are offered for delight of instant recognition and the riddle of a dream or an elusive memory.

Garcia is conscious that the objects in his paintings have both universal cultural significance and individually distinct personal meaning.  Stuffed toys and cartoon characters are surrogates for human figures and metaphors for the human condition.  We know they are stand-ins and not the real thing, and yet we animate them, projecting onto them our stories.  He hesitates to explain his personal associations with these objects too specifically. “Preserving the mystery is vital to my paintings,” he says. “To over describe them is to lose something in that translation. The painting is not to be understood in terms of its fragments so much as in terms of its whole.”

He intends for viewers' minds to be activated by these paintings, filled with darting thoughts while probing their deeper meanings.  He says: “I want there to be an element of doubt, an element of consequence. I want my paintings to speak of real stuff. It’s subtle but it’s there.”

Born in Houston, Texas, Garcia attended Houston’s High School for the Performing and Visual Arts before studying for two years at the Art Institute of Chicago. He was honored in 2005 with a Painters and Sculptors grant from the Joan Mitchell Foundation. His work has been included in five recent museum shows and several books on Southwest art.

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