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Exhibition at Ruiz-Healy Art in San Antonio questions the cultural context of our time
Eugenia Martínez, "Perro con Lentes", 2016. Piezography on canvas, glazed paint and plexi, 55.7 x 40.4".

SAN ANTONIO, TX.- Ruiz-Healy Art is presenting Straight from Mexico City--in the same collaborative spirit as past RHA programming---Straight from Berlin (with Galerie EIGEN + ART in Leipzig/Berlin March 2014) and Straight from Spain (with Blanca Berlín Galería in Madrid October 2014)---Straight from Mexico City partners with another respected international gallery- Galería Karen Huber in Mexico City. The exhibition will be on display through April 23, 2016.

Straight from Mexico City questions the cultural context of our time and the history of painting itself with a critical construction of identity set forth in a pictorial practice. Organized by guest curator Octavio Avendaño Trujillo, guest artist's Eugenia Martínez, Kanako Namura, Manuel Solano, and Rafael Uriegas are selected from Galería Karen Huber's roster. In June of this year, four artists from the RHA roster will be included in an exhibition at Galería Karen Huber in Mexico City as part of this exchange: Nate Cassie, Constance Lowe, Cecilia Biagini, and Jesse Amado.

In Straight from Mexico City, Eugenia Martínez, draws from Novohispanic painting and its Baroque codes, a tension is created that puts into question cultural perspectives through writing as a critical exercise. Martínez incorporates salvaged photographs and juxtaposes repetition of text in an overlay to both conceal and emphasize different portions of the pictorial platform. Martinez has exhibited internationally and is in many collections, including The Red Bull- Salzburg, Austria; Colección Jumex, México; Museo de la Secretaria de Hacienda y Crédito Publico, México and Luciano Benetton, Italy.

A different approach to painting is taken by Kanako Namura, Born in Osaka, Japan and currently residing in Mexico City, she generates a relationship that can either be distant or kin to the mental compositions of two opposing societies as the artist identifies with both Japanese and Mexican cultures. Works on paper and installations exhibit Namura’s fascination with patterns both constructed, with grids and linked cells, and stochastic arrays traced by accident or the subconscious. Never rigid, her delicate displays seem driven by organic necessity, recalling the intricate forms made by colonies of plants, maps recording police incident reports or vagaries of the weather. Kanako’s transient childhood between two distant cultures harbored a skepticism of language and greatly impacted her work. Her obsessive drawings, reliefs and objects replace words to document her life, asking, why do we need structure, how does something change over time? Namura received her MFA from San Francisco State University, and BFA from both Kansas City Art Institute and Osaka University of Art, Japan. She has exhibited in over 10 solo and group exhibitions in Japan, Mexico and the United States.

Born in the State of Mexico, Mexico, painter, video and performance artist Manuel Solano’s recent work was made after he lost his sight through HIV complications; he names himself a “blind transgendered artist with AIDS.” Also using text, his current paintings are expressionist salvos of brio, mixing a ragged script recalling street art with brash figuration that seems to rush off the page. Highly impacted by what might be overbearing tragedy to another, his investigations affirm his continued refusal to be limited by identity or occurrence. “Other people see an image that isn’t really us. … speaking of the gender of a person, you are not establishing the person,” Solano says. “When I realized that the option could exist that I Manuel, was neither man or woman, instantly I felt more comfortable. Sometimes I wonder if people realize how fun my work is to me. Even when I’m talking about my misfortunes, I’m having fun – for whatever reason.

Finally, Rafael Uriegas is engaged in the Latin American School of Painting, especially that of landscape as an abstraction close to modernity that reveals itself before a sensual mysticism. Born in Malaga, Spain, Rafael Uriegas received his BFA at “La Esmeralda” (ENPEG) in Mexico City, and MFA from the Universdad Autonoma of the State of Morelos, Mexico. He currently lives and works in Mexico City. In contradistinction to the other artists in Straight from Mexico City, Uriegas does not incorporate text into his paintings. Brightly colorful panoplies of floral extravagance are inhabited—or perhaps, visited by—characters that do not reveal to the viewer their private agendas. What joins Uriegas to the rest of this quartet is the sense of joy and no small amount of astonishment his paintings insist that the world offers.

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March 29, 2016

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Exhibition at Ruiz-Healy Art in San Antonio questions the cultural context of our time

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