“The Visionary, Architectural, Psychological Art of Alexis Duque” — art review by Bea Garth

Alexis Duque’s imaginative multi-layered stacked images are iconic descriptions of the world we humans seem to be creating in the face of our out-of-control worship of greed.

"Asteroid," acrylic on canvas by Alexis Duque, copyright 2014

“Asteroid,” acrylic on canvas by Alexis Duque, copyright 2014

Instead of the freedom many imagined at the turn of the previous century with its “Futurists,” Duque’s work describes the fact so many of us live in hive like habitats much like swarms of worker bees or termites lost in space.

His work suggests that we are not the Borg, but we may be its close cousins despite all our individual idiosyncrasies.

I can just hear the hum of our combined  hive mind while each part desperately tries to keep its sanity and individuality! As you may too when you look out the window, hear your neighbor to each side as well as above or below you, or drive our congested streets in many parts of the world.

I love the texture these pieces by Duque impart as well as their combined serious and whimsical nature.

"Satellite," acrylic on canvas by Alexis Duque, copyright 2014

“Satellite,” acrylic on canvas by Alexis Duque, copyright 2014

Questions of what is this world we live in, and can we save it? come to mind.

Are we simply users eating the world like ravenous termites gone crazy? Or can we transcend this state by using our combined one-ness to return to a healthier state of being?





Alexis Duque’s obsessive playful yet serious architectural, psychological

"Self Portrait," acrylic on canvas by Alexis Duque, copyright 2015

“Self Portrait,” acrylic on canvas by Alexis Duque, copyright 2015

paintings beckon us to look at the future we may have once idealized and what it is doing to us.

Ultimately, Duque’s paintings suggest to me that the Earth will swallow our culture as just one more decayed although fantastically busy example to feast upon–much as the forests of the Amazon covered over the civilizations and architecture of the ancient past.

We have as a culture the choice to collectively crumble into ruins by our excesses if we keep it up–much as the fabled ancient Atlanteans were destroyed by volcanoes with the remains swallowed up by  deep oceans and dusts of Time. Or we can face who and what we are and choose to do the work to create a different, better path.

Art Review by Bea Garth, copyright 2017


Bio: Alexis Duque.  Imaginatively charting the psychological experience of space, Alexis Duque produces paintings and drawings of buildings and domestic interiors stacked and conglomerated into surreal, absurd mounds and towers. His compositions are detailed, highly organized, and meticulously architectural.  Through his playful stacking and piling, he reorders cities to examine the formal properties of their architecture.  Alexis Duque holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from The University of Antioquia, Colombia. His work has been exhibited in numerous venues including: at El Museo del Barrio, The Drawing Center and Praxis International Gallery in New York; The Museum of Latin American Art (MOLAA), Long Beach, CA; Champion Contemporary, Austin, TX; The Alden B. Dow Museum of Science and Art, Midland, MI; RudolfV Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherlands and Galleri Oxholm in Copenhagen, Denmark. Duque’s work has been featured in several publications, including: “ImagineArchitecture: Artistic Visions Of The Urban Realm”, “Caribbean: Together Apart Contemporary Artists from (part of) the Caribbean” Imago Mundi – Luciano Benetton, Blue Canvas Magazine, LandEscape Art review, Beautiful Decay, Artistaday, New American Paintings, Studio Visit Magazine, The East Hampton Star, The East Hampton Press and El Diario of New York.  Duque currently lives and works in NYC.    http://www.alexisduque.net

Categories: art review by Bea Garth, painting by Alexis Duque, symbolic painting

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