Introductory Essay – Santiago Garci

Oil on Linen by Santiago Garci titled Nueva York I.
Photo of Santiago Garci

I am honored to present my paintings for the first time in New York, at the QCC Art Gallery of the City University of New York. These works were created in the central region of Spain in Castilla-La Mancha, best known as the setting forĀ Don Quixote, as well as for its glorious sunflowers and fertile olive groves. I would be delighted if the works can speak to an American audience to extend beyond the immediate impressions of time and place. As a painter I use visual means to create an experience that transcends the senses. I strive to encourage the viewer to find himself in the work.

I endeavor to make beautiful works to encourage a sense of well-being in the observer. I do not however equate beauty with mere prettiness but the ability of the painting to stimulate the emotions. The artist has the potential to communicate a range of thoughts and feelings through rhythm, balance and harmony.

Excerpts of critical writings on the artist

Significant painting is always more genuine when you can experience it directly. This allows you to feel close to the creator. Only then can you enter into your own feelings given the transparency with which the work was developed. The observer is led into the artist’s experience to combine it with his own.

Jos Luis Marchante Araque, Art Critic

Santiago Garci is a self-taught artist who was however deeply inspired by his countryman from the Ciudad Real region of Castilla-La Mancha: Antonio Lopez Torres, b.1902-d.1987. Lopez Torres’ paintings now comprise the Museo Antonio Lopez Torres in Tomelloso. Garci’s paintings similarly describe the Manchegan vineyards, the region’s olive groves and sunflowers with a hyper-realist intensity, as these scenes may appear directly before us on a vivid sun-drenched day. The canvases too evoke a sense of time. Garci appreciates the region’s historical journey from mule-driven wooden carriages and Roman plows to today’s wineries that trade with the most demanding connoisseurs. Transcending his devotion to Lopez-Torres, Garci offers us a singular expression directly from his emotions to the eyes of the observer. So personal is the artist’s new path that I would dare to say that Garci has invented a style that can be called emotivismo.

Miguel Angel Garcia Brera, Journalist and Art Critic