365 Days in the Tropical Forest: Recent work by artist Chemi Rosado-Seijo (2014)

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365 Days in the Tropical Forest (2013)
Chemi Rosado-Seijo
Organic material over raw canvas
Roberto Paradise Gallery

A series of pre-prepared white canvases are left out in the northern tropical forest of Puerto Rico, registering the passing of time.
– Chemi Rosado-Seijo

A landscape that is not painted but which paints itself, representing nature with its own color matrix. This painting is generated not by human chemistry or the pixel, but by pigments, saps, and other substances produced by the foliage. When you encounter and observe the weathered rock surface under a tree in the tropics, because of the frequent rain, an organic soup forms out of the secretion of plants and flowers. Marks are left and a series of natural patterns form. Rosado-Seijo seeks to harness the potential of this natural process, typical of the rainforest environ which thrives in the tropical island of Puerto Rico, the artist’s place of birth. The morphology of the suffusion of organic matter is accompanied by a statement which identifies the location where the painting was made — the artist selected locations where certain trees are growing, virtually staging the stain, and making the open space in the lush island of Puerto Rico his workshop.

Rosado-Seijo has worked with notions of landscape since early in his career in the late 1990’s, but is especially evident in his project titled El Cerro (The Hill) (2002), where he fused a community of houses with the hill that holds them along its brow by painting them in shades of green that mirror the surrounding tropical foliage. The multicolored houses seen from afar created a visual dissonance with the hill, one which the artist sought to mitigate by way of working with the community to change the color schemes of all the houses to a diverse palette of greens.

The artwork shown above is part of a series with the same title, and can be seen at Roberto Paradise Gallery in San Juan, Puerto Rico. For more information about artist Chemi Rosado-Seijo, or about any of his previous work click here.

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