Expressionist Painter Jose Acosta
Narrative by Joseph Caplan - Publisher
On a crisp autumn afternoon, inside the Howland Cultural Center, I reset the staid stereotypic regimen of art I once embraced from the determination of art as indicative of daily life, to art as celebratory of modern life. As I stared into the works of expressionist painter Jose Acosta, I emerged with a radical new model of art.
No doubt you sense the closed atmosphere that envelopes art on display, the tactile residue that invites your attention yet feigns aloofness. Art that lures you with abstract imagery, distorted depth, or color contrast while the remoteness of the work holds you at bay. But what if one artist, with interpretive vision, uncloaked the daily distortions to portray our familiar world with a dimension of emotionality? If the canvas became a master to the heart of the painter, rather than the slave of his brain, imagine the creative product, the unbounded cathartic release of pure interpretive imagery.
Such is the collection of expressionist multimodal artist Jose Acosta. Works framed so uniquely, acrylic pigments seem to dance with energy, to impart a sense of emotionality to the topic, with unabashed candor. In a deliberate sense the subject of the piece wants to grab you, to unilaterally involve you into the diorama.
Whatever measure determines the value of art, there is the unrestrained dynamic that involves the fluidity of interpretive skill of Mr. Acosta. On display is the magic to refocus the banal commonality of things to a new level. You need simply to marvel at the pure unrestrained joy of his works.
In a private tour of his home, or more aptly described gallery, Mr. Acosta narrated the circumstance of his approach to the visual arts.
Born in Cuba, the family migrated to the United States to meld within the Miami environment. So the Caribbean color palette is one ingredient in his works.
One other is his profession as structural or mechanical engineer. So the discipline of mathematical precision, material science and structural integrity offer the other ingredient. Which is why, in his “Jazz Club” painting, your visual task is simply to appreciate the tonal balance as Mr. Acosta creatively set this piece in harmonic balance with symmetric precision.
As surely as the musical elements beckon, the piece begins with irresistible allure, envelops your attention, and leaves you fulfilled. Almost in synchrony with the baton of the conductor, your attention seems directed to the individual “sections” of the piece, each stylized to represent a musical image. So while a horn blurts, or a keyboard twists, the sensuality of a Latin Club dances in front of you.
Work after work, the dimensionality of the pieces, the texture of the acrylics, the intensity of the colors, lure you into the canvas to the point you lose yourself in imagination. In the pure sense of Freudian theory, you might even project whether the dancer, the player or the singer is you.
Without a doubt, the textural nuance of the work is stunning, which is why no description is either adequate or does it justice. So suffice it merely to say, the works of Mr. Jose Acosta warrant your attention.
A brush is, after all, a blunt tool. Creative imagery, or textural imagery, demands the appropriate hardware to transfer the emotional theme onto canvas. This is done by acrylic ribbons, squiggles, and layers of depth unique to this artist.
There is not simply a statement here, but rather a dimensional transfer of the heart of Mr. Acosta. I asked if there was a series of work in mind, perhaps a volume of work to flesh out a theme. “No,” the painter replied, “I paint what I feel.”
I cannot paint what I feel, but what I think and feel, in front of his paintings, is sheer awe.
Mr. Acosta hosted a private gallery event at his home to preview quite a few works headed to the famous ABRO Gallery in Miami. If you have never explored a studio, our visit was blissful, with the full array of both sculptural and textural images just displayed so matter of factly. Here I was, in full awe of the private Acosta Gallery, even if one masterpiece hung in their laundry room.
Whether you marvel at any images, captured in digital format, sculpted in metal or glass, or placed onto canvas with a knife, the allure of any Acosta painting is the vitality. I hope you excuse the cliché, the work of this artist is unique in the synthesis of heart and mind, depicted in scenes of daily life, with emotional undertones and interpretive genius.
No wonder the World Bank, colleges and private investors collect his works. But still, so unpretentious an artist, to share his home, his time and unparalleled work, for hours with our staff.
After a most informative review of his private gallery, a discussion of his acrylic works and extensive personal interview, the above narrative about expressionist painter Jose Acosta emerged.