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Carlos Chavez Paintings

My Reflections

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Here are some thoughts on my work.

"Inspiration" by Carlos Chavez

My proposal is based on facts latent within me, a relationship of man-animal-machine as art-desire-dream. In my work automobiles describe my journeys and my past. They are not exactly pictures of automobiles, but rather models transformed and designed, form which represent the essence of autos.

Some parts are recognizable: the grill work, and the lights which form the eyes and mouth, but the others are more abstracts...Objects of daily life describe my emotions. These playful and prankish forms, which arise from my personality, join to form a magnificent vision.
My town was the scene of all my anxieties: its fields, its roads, and its gardens joined together in a lively way - all a part of my life.

These surroundings, these disorders, began in my childhood. I jourČneyed restlessly; I dreamed like a dream walker sitting in a tire. At the same time, I was part of the town of Paijan, a magical town, filled with rich traditions. To see great images: little trucks stripped and marked with eloquent phrases, such as "This is important to no one" or "So goes life" or "Slowly one travels far." To hear my grandfather say: "Listen son to what my car is saying, little money,' little money, little money." I traveled much and lost my way through the fields. I ate with the hired-hands. And many times I worked with them. Finally, an old small truck picked us up. The night was dark, the sky lit up, lights went on and off, and I felt happy."

"My Footsteps in Paijan, My Natice Land" by Carlos Chavez

I was born in the north of Peru, in 1952, nearby the Pacific Ocean in a small town called "Paijan", which belongs to the municipality of La Libertad. Paijan is an ancient town with an ancient culture. The Mochicas were its inhabitants. Their footsteps are still in me. Paijan's deserted beaten roads, its orchards and trenches, streets and houses surrounded by high forests marked my emotions. It is there where carpenters, bricklayer, musicians, poets, shoemakers, and talebearers melted their work, which woke up in me great emotions and gave me a great sense of creations.

During my childhood when I was going to school, my teacher (Mr. Napoleon) discovered that I had talent for drawing, which made me very happy. Some of my friends shared the same talent, but they use to make fun of my art because I use to transform and disfigure that which is real. Unconsciously I would break and create new forms.
I remember how sad and upset I use to feel when I was not able to get a prize in the drawing competitions since my drawings did not meet the traditional style.

Something that I was interested in was to get to know my native history. My town offered me some disorganized views, so I felt in need of finding out by myself. I went to look for Pre-Incas ceramics in a ruin called Licapa. I spent an afternoon looking at great mural showing some leopard colors combined with blue, and with geometric lines symbolizing anthropomorphic figures. I felt that among my people existed artists who knew color and form. This helped me to find out who I was and at the same time it answered many questions that were deep in my thoughts.

My father used to enjoy the little time that he spent at home by watching me clean and paint his trucks. As I was growing up, I suffered a lot because I wanted to learn how to drive my father's trucks, but I knew that he would never allow me. So time went by and I began to notice two very interesting sources which relate to each other, first my father and second his red truck.

I left home at a very young age and went to the City of Lima to -continue my studies in the school for the Arts. I worked very hard to support myself in the City because my dream was difficult and hard to get. Then came alone a great master, Mr. Angel Chavez. He taught me the technics and secrets of painting. It was a moral back up that I will never forget.

Later I moved on to New York in 1983. My dreams became more - , intense, my art met new horizons. Today my purpose is based on my life experience. I expose a Man-Animal-Machine as Art-Wish-Dream, proposing a mechanical vision discovering my trips and my past. They are not pictures of automobiles, but models transformed and redesigned which represent the essence of autos. Some parts are noticeable (fenders, lights) forming a mouth and eyes, some others are more abstracts. All of this tell my emotions through objects of my daily life; capricious forms which play, the product of my personality united in fantasy.

My home was ancient, it does not exist anymore. It is now modern in my dreams. My artistic life is still a continuation of new circumstances. I am an interpreter of my nature. I don't believe in bad artists but I do believe in lies. Now I understand why old things become new in my emotions. They've asked me if other artists have influenced my work and I must confess that I have been in the museum, some artists have helped me, but I left them alone because I know my circumstances. I must mention two great personalities: Marc Ernst and Francis Bacon.

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