Wednesday, July 28, 2010

~~~Visual Arts Wednesday~~"Dolorosa" by Oscar Ortiz

Today I would like to discuss the pastel on paper "Dolorosa" by Oscar Ortiz if that is ok with you? For those of you who would like just a Zen Like appreciation without the background story or my personal analysis please feel free to stop reading...NOW. For all others stay tuned and please enjoy my research into the fine Yucatan artist that produced this fine work of art.

The history about this work goes back for me to 1980. As a frequent visitor to the Forest City Art Gallery in London, Ontario, at that time on King Street and Queen next to Novak's Army Surplus store (which has also since moved) I happened upon this work and loved it. It called to me.

The emotionality of the piece and the subtle jungle-like colours are simply amazing. It is great to feel something from an art work, it means you are alive. Why this piece spoke to me is due to the fact it had such a dramatic feeling. It was the feeling that drew me (pardon the pun) to this piece of art.

What about you? Are you drawn to the feeling behind the image or just the image? Do you find that feelings get in the way of your life or are feeling an important and an intregal part of your life? Please let me know.

Since I have been critized (that's funny the critic being critized!)about over-analyzing a work of art, poetry etc and not appreciating the art for simply standing alone and being "art". I will leave the deciphering wholly up to you this week. Next I will try to educate my detractors if it is at all possible. I am proud to say (pride cometh before the fall) that I am University of Western Ontario Canada educated and I stand behind every bit of critism I make here on Chiccoreal blogsite. If you don't like it...take a hike to the next blog; would ya? Thanks!

As a student of Visual Arts at UWO I was in third year during the "Exposicion de Intercambio Trabajos en Papel" Gobierno Del Estado Fonapas Yucatan artist exchange from the Yucatan with the Forest City Gallery de London, Ontario Canada.

Here is a paper I kept from that time;

"Art exhibit completes exchange" by Dennis Kutcherawy of The Free Press

From the lush colours of Mexico's tropical vegetation to glamorous Hollywood starlets, the figurative images in the exchange of works on paper between the Forest City Galery in London and a group of Mexican artistsfrom Merida, Yucatan,span that country's past and present.

The idea for the exchange was born during Jamelie Hassan's painting trip to the Yucatan peninsula in March. Hassan is the former president of Forest City Gallery. While looking for paint supplies, she met Gildo Gonzalez, an artist and co-ordinator of exhibitions for the state government of Yucatan. They talked about London's artists cooperative and agreed they should do something together. With a limited budget they decided an exchange of works on paper would be the least expensive.

On June 6, a show of drawings, photographs and watercolors by Forest City Members Ron Benner, Bob Zarski, Jim Gillies, Chris Dewdne, Kerry Ferris, Sam Kirzan, Greg Curnoe, George Legrady and Jamie Lee Hassan opened for a month-long run. Now, with the show currently at the Forest City Gallery until July 30, the exchange is complete.

In comparison to the works by the London artists, which Hassan calls "conceptualizations of concepts" the Mexican works are conceptualizations of the human situation.

The pastels of Oscar Ortiz, for example, borrows many influences including the primitive masks and pattern designs of the Aztecs, the Catholic image of the Virgin, and American starlets in a flat drawing style reminiscent of art nouveau. His tropical colors of greens, reds and blues are not as vibrant one might expect, but his images in Red Dress and Dolorosa reflect the dichotomy of society's view of woman's role between Hoy Virgin and harlot."

Oh...harlot! Boy could I talk your ear off here, but I wont. Maybe next week.

Enjoi mon petites!



  1. I ain't gonna criticise your crit! Loved it, and thanks for the introduction.

  2. Oscar Ortiz is really good in conveying emotions through his art work. This painting is more of art Nouveau inspired. :)

  3. @digital printing companies thanks for your input, could you please explain to me how you feel that this work on paper is "Art Nouveau" inspired? Oh like Diego Rivera? Are you in California?

  4. well I view it as more of Art Nouveau inspired because of the flowing curvilinear forms I see on this work. I'm not sure about Diego Rivera but his a Mexican right?