Show Preview | Javier López Barbosa

Santa Fe, NM
Waxlander Gallery & Sculpture Garden, May 19-June 1

Javier López Barbosa, Momentum, mixed media, 10 x 12.

Javier López Barbosa, Momentum, mixed media, 10 x 12.

This story was featured in the May 2015 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art May 2015 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story!

A shy child growing up, Javier López Barbosa says his way of communicating with the world was through creating art. Armed continually with an array of colored pencils, crayons, and watercolors, the New Mexico-based artist says he began painting early in life and pursued it earnestly. This month, Waxlander Gallery & Sculpture Garden welcomes Barbosa to the gallery with a debut presentation titled Lyrical Expressions, a show that features more than 30 new works by the artist. The gallery also hosts a reception for the artist from 5 to 8 p.m. on Friday, May 22.

Today Barbosa is well-known for his bold and colorful abstract works. Gallery director Bonnie French describes the artist’s signature paintings as conveying elements of depth, movement, and energy. “This leads the viewer to experience a fluid, almost musical feel in his new work,” French says.

The musical feel often stems from the artist’s carefully executed compositions of color: layers of acrylic, oils, and glazes that come together to create a harmonious, symphonic whole. Barbosa believes his love affair with color originated from his native Mexico, a country where color is ubiquitous in homes, clothing, arts, and crafts. Barbosa employs color, he says, to reflect various feelings and emotions. Indeed, when discussing his new works, the artist says, “My inspiration, as usual, comes from within and the now.”

The titles of Barbosa’s paintings also offer clues to this continuing source of  inspiration. Titles such as INTUITION, PAINTED EMOTIONS, SERENITY, and LIBERATION suggest his internal state during the creative process. His overall spontaneous approach to creating art also means that he rarely has a definite idea of what he is going to paint when he faces a blank canvas. Instead, Barbosa says, he simply starts with a color that comes into his mind and lets the magic unfold. A self-taught artist, the painter has always felt that his art should be about letting his soul speak—and speak out loudly. “Making successful paintings means enjoying the moment while 
creating, leaving the ego aside, going with the flow of the moment, and not worrying if the work will sell or not, 
but just doing what I enjoy,” Barbosa says. “I think this should apply to everything we do in life.” —Bonnie Gangelhoff

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Featured in the May 2015 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
Southwest Art May 2015 print issue or digital download Or subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss a story!

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