The Golden Player. Serie Diary of an artist, 2012. Acrylic on linen, 130x97 cm
Courtesy Halcyon Gallery, London

 

 
Bajo las estrellas
/ Under the Stars. Serie Canary Paradise, 2008 . Acrylic on linen, 195 x 130 cm
Courtesy Halcyon Gallery, London


Siempre digo lo mismo, esperando decir algo diferente / I always say the same thing, hoping tos ay something different
Serie Dialogues, 2010. Acrylic on canvas and electrical wire on wall, 200 x 280 cm
Courtesy Halcyon Gallery, London

 


Pedro Paricio

 

Closed off in a studio, removed from the world, Pedro Paricio wears a black hat as he channels the spirits of the earth through the tip of his brush. In his studio he paints for twelve hours a day, day after day, taking a day off maybe once a week, but never more. Being away from the studio makes him hunger for it more.

Paricio’s most recent show “Shaman” opened earlier this year at Halcyon Gallery, London, and published in a catalog of the same name. The paintings collected here are portals into another world, distinctly alluring rabbit holes to a starburst wonderland. As tour guide to an altered state, Paricio’s work is at once rich yet stark, the deepest blacks centering our eye on to his path. Complementing this series is “The Spirit of Paining,” a series of 37 works on paper that refer to specific works of art from the Spanish Baroque and Italian Renaissance, remade in Paricio’s vision of the infinite space that the canvas as portal creates.

Born in Tenerife in the Canary Islands, Paricio chose to engage with art because he was in search of life, a life that would take him from the island of his childhood and bring him to Salamanca, Spain. “The Canary Paradise,” his first solo show, was held in 2007 at Ikara Skate Shop & Gallery, in Barcelona. He supported himself as an artist by taking a wide range of jobs, everything from editing magazines to being a clown at children’s parties. He was committed, as only a true believer can, to the understanding that painting is his destiny.

As Paricio recalls, “My first show was called ‘The Canary Paradise.’ The Canary Islands is something to live. It is a place you need to feel in yourself. We live in a worldwide culture, where big cities are close to one another with similar shops, books, fashions, and styles. The Canary Islands has an old soul. Our people follow traditions. We do many things in the same way as our fathers and grandfathers, still a lot of islanders from the countryside areas fishing and growing food in our gardens.

“The light in the Canary Islands is very important. The weather is good all year round. It is a paradise. Tenerife, my island, has the highest mountain in Spain. We have different weather systems. It is a micro-world. The people are very relaxed here. No one is running here. You walk. You don’t run. You stop in a shop and talk to the people. There is no stress on this island. People are happy.

“As a child, I spent summers in Spain, then I lived in Salamanca and Barcelona, and now I live between London and the Canary Islands. I have a studio and a home in both places. When I am in London, I have a rich cultural life. I go to the museums, I see Matisse, Lucian Freud, Titian—the major exhibitions. But I need the Canary Islands to recover my soul. When I sleep in Tenerife, I hear the birds of the forest. I connect with the life of the islands. This is a place that is authentic and deep. It is the simplicity of the life: the forest, food, and family. The City is amazing, but at the same time it will destroy me as well.”

“I need the big cities because I love art. For me art is my life. I say, I do a deal with art, it is a deal with the devil. There are not two options. I discovered that art is not a choice. The more I paint, the more, more, more I only want to paint. I paint for twelve hours every day. This is my life. I have sacrificed it all for painting when I began. I cannot have a job and paint in my other time. Think about two hours a day versus twelve hours a day. I only want to paint. If I am hungry, if I sleep on the floor, that is what I must do. Fate is something you feel or don’t feel.

“For me, art tries to connect a person to their soul. You don’t need to read a book to understand a painting. It is more like a minotaur in a labyrinth. Maybe the labyrinth doesn’t have an exit. Life does not have an exit either I am a human looking inside myself, talking about humanity. It is a reflection, a way that does not have an end. The end is not the point. The point is the way. We are alive. We are a way. We can choose a vision and a dream. The beauty of art is freedom.

“I say my art is open. I don’t say what I ‘do.’ I open doors. I only say, ‘Think about yourself.’

“I am a painter, and the tradition of painting is important to me. I see a Veronese. After five hundred years, it still works. It still moves my soul. This is where I want to go. I paint for today and for tomorrow. If you’re a painter, you have to learn from the past. This is what Picasso did.

“A very important part of my art is the tradition. Tradition is something that humanity has in common with all of history. Some traditions can be revisited if they are not right, but maybe some are right. They are invisible energies. Tradition is like chess. This is a game that is possible more than 1,400 years old. It is Indian, Persian, Arabic, and then it came to Europe trough Spain, where at middle age get few changes and got chess we play today. This is me, and this is my art. A mix of cultures.

“For me, chic is like art. It is something you have, or you don’t. People can put on whatever thing and it is chic. It is more about personality than it is about look. You make your look with your personality.

“Like painting, the hat came to me. At some point, I was wearing it every day. I said, ‘Wow. I have been wearing this hate every day for five years. Why?’ It is in the tradition of Joseph Beuys. The hat is like a mask. It id a symbol of myself.”

Links
Artwork courtesy of Pedro Paricio
Curated by Miss Rosen

 

 

Mitos humanos (la Edad de Oro) / Human tales (The Gold Age)
Serie The Shaman, 2014. Acrylic on linen, 255 x 85.5 cm
Courtesy Halcyon Gallery, London

 

 


Máscara de ritual canario 9 / Canary ritual mask 9. Serie Canary ritual mask, 2011
Mixture technique on paper, 32.5 x 23 cm
Courtesy Halcyon Gallery, London

 

Sisifo & Atlas. Serie The Shaman, 2013. Dyptic. 150 x 260 cm. Acrylic on linen.
Courtesy Halcyon Gallery, London

   

 


Autorretrato después de Velázquez (Jinete dorado) / Self-portrait alter Velázquez (Golden rider)
Serie Master Painters, 2011. Acrylic on linen, 195 x 130 cm
Courtesy Halcyon Gallery, London