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PATHWAYS OF A VISUAL ALCHEMIST by Humberto Pérez

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PATHWAYS OF A VISUAL ALCHEMIST BY HUMBERTO PEREZ

In 1969, Mirna Salamanqués, a Young Caracas born self-taught visual artista, after none one-man exhibitions since her first one in 1962, she arrives in Paris-France where she establishes herself as a dedicated abstract painter.  From being an office employee, a housewife and a spontaneius painter, as reportes used to label her in her native Venezuela, she enters the French School of Arte Deco, majors in mural Art under the guidance of 2 French Academicians from l´Ecole des Beaux-Arts, Mr. Jacques   DESPIERRE AND Mr. George ROHNER and gains profesional experience as an intent at the craftmanship section of JESUS-RAPHAEL SOTO´s Art Studio.

After 3 years of rigurous schooling and active participation on Art Fairs and group shows all over Europe, Salamanques picks the fruit of her efforts when the painting ASSEMBLAGE 333 (ACRYLIC ON CANVAS  3´11 X 3´11, 1972) enters the permanent collection of the Paris Museum of Modern Art.  At the 1972 “COMPARAISONS” showing this piece of work not only drew visitors and connoisseurs attention at the Grand Palais exhibiting grounds but it also raised controversial commentaries among members of the Art community and special acknowledgments from Art commisssioners and critics..

Her  fruitful  output and continuous  performances  made  her  recipient of an scholarships  and grants  from  the  French  Government  and  the  Venezuelan  Instituto  of  Fine  Arts  (INCIBA) .

 In 1974 at  the 30 Salon de Mai headed  by  prestigious french critic Gastón Diehl, her painting ASSEMBLAGE  FRANCIS  RAAB,  (ACRYLIC ON CANVAS, 3´11 x 3´11, 1974) received  an acquisition-prize from the city of Paris.  She  also  received  awards from  other  french institutions such as the National Center of Contemporary Art (C.N.A.C.) and the  Regional Center for University & Scholar Art Works (C.R.O.U.S.).   As a result of her initerrupted  exhibiting  activity, she is granted an artist´ s studio at Cité Internationale des Arts Foundation´s Building.  As soon as she moves into her Atelier  with a view  of  St. Louis Isle and across from Notre-Dame´s catedral, she  puts  herself  at work  and  develops   a  consistent   graphic   work  on  the  subject  of  STRUCTURE.

Two years later. The French Department of Cultural Affairs offers her a huge working-space at the Smith Champion Foundation´s in Nogent sur Marne, nearby the Vincennes´ Woods.  In this studio, she i sable to take to large-scale canvases most of  her  early studies,  try outs and Graphic Assemblages  made on paper during  her  school  years.  As  an artista in residency at  the Maison Nationale des Artistes, she steadily trusted her intuition as a powerful guiding  force to bring  about  visual  codes  and  signs  of  esoteric  meaning  out of primordial  geometric  forms.  She challenged  herself  to  create contemplative spaces  out of rigid technological  products by framing industrial  serial   patterns INTO BIG OSCILLATING ENERGY SPHERES and  by  enclosing recurring mechanical grids into vibrant poligonal Windows.

As a result of this prolific and imaginative  working period, she reached notorious   expressive fullness on her new output.  She not only expanded artistically but  also produced a large number of over sized Works   which entered important Art Collections  in France and in Venezuela.

Undelying  structures, moving systems and fascinating COSMIC MANDALAS opened up a steep and long pathways toward sprotiality which after 30 years of ceaseless with more elation and resources tan ever.

HUMBERTO PEREz

UCLA, Los Angeles/ B.A.  87. 

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