This incredible painter from Durango, Mexico is Ricardo Fernandez Ortega. He seems to channel the baroque in a way that feels like Bosch or Velazquez would have been proud. Rich, dark hues, expert interpretation of light, movement, gesture, and emotion. Ortega’s ability to convey contour so expertly is truly amazing, and tests the way one think about modern work. It’s hard to find out much about Ricardo, but his work reflects an appreciation of history both in technique and context, while imparting the weight of art that’s existed for hundreds of years.
As an artist, one can mix and match realities, applying theoretical constructs to the past, while juxtaposing elements that history could never reconcile. While Ortega doesn’t implant his work with modernities that don’t belong, his sheer ability to authentically communicate an era we could never reach out and touch, is both impressive and curious. The work shares the intensity in the darkness in with a realistic shimmer of light, and produces quality that museum walls would wish for.