Andrés Reynaldo July 31 2014

Silencio, que esta dormido. 

Un artista se define por la creación de un lenguaje. Arturo Rodríguez ha creado el suyo. En este libro un grupo de amigos poetas hemos tratado de ilustrar unos dibujos que presentan dos enormes dificultades a la escritura: son demasiado personales para descifrarlos por la crítica y demasiado universales para apropiárnoslos por la literatura.

Sin embargo, la empatía de los autores con el pintor le ha dado a la obra una unidad. Disímiles en estilos y tonos, todos coincidimos en la atmósfera. O mejor dicho, la poderosa y sombría fuerza de los dibujos nos impuso un mismo ánimo. Puede que ninguno de nosotros se levante a las tres de la madrugada para enfrentar sus demonios con la coartada de que va a enfrentar el lienzo en blanco. Pero ya sabemos lo que cuesta. A esa hora sin ventanas, sin música.

Hay artistas que luchan por alucinar a pesar de la razón. Arturo, en cambio, desespera por razonar en medio de la alucinación. En estos dibujos, esa tensión amenaza a veces con rozar lo abstracto. Alguien, con menos paciencia, hubiera terminado en una brutal y hermética mancha. Anclado en una tradición, sabedor de que el experimento sólo vale cuando trasciende la tradición, Arturo persiste en mantener una narrativa en cada pieza.

Si la pintura que ilustra la palabra tiende a la claridad, la palabra que ilustra la pintura tiende a la confusión. No creo que ninguno de nuestros textos consiga explicar alguno de estos dibujos. Probablemente nadie entre nosotros se propuso tan arriesgada misión. La costumbre asocia el aquelarre a la fiesta y la máscara a la impostura. Aquí el aquelarre es tragedia y la máscara es rostro.

¿Quién se atreve a despertar al pintor de esta fundamental vigilia?  

 

Silence, he is asleep.

An artist is defined by the creation of a language, and Arturo Rodríguez has created his own. In this book, as a group of poet friends, we have tried to illustrate a series of drawings that present two major challenges to writing; they are too intimate to be unraveled by a critic and too universal for us to appropriate them through literature. 

Despite this, the authors’ empathy with the painter has made the work cohesive. Dissimilar in style and tone, we all coincide in essence. Or better said, the powerful and dark strength of the drawings impose a shared mood. Perhaps none of us would rise at three in the morning to face our demons with the alibi of facing a blank canvas. But we surely know what it takes–at that hour, without windows, without music.

There are artists that struggle to hallucinate in spite of reason. Arturo, on the other hand, is desperate to reason in the midst of the hallucination. In these drawings, that tension sometimes threatens to border on the abstract. Someone with less patience would have ended with a brutal and hermetic stain. Rooted in a tradition, knowing that the experiment is only worthy when it transcends tradition, Arturo persists in maintaining the narrative in every piece.

If the painting that illustrates the word tends towards clarity, the word that illustrates the painting tends towards confusion. I don’t think that any one of our texts accomplishes an explanation of these drawings. Probably not one among us even attempted such a risky mission. Tradition associates the coven to a celebration and the mask to deception. Here the coven is tragedy and the mask is visage. 

Who would dare wake the painter from this fundamental vigil? 

  

Andrés Reynaldo was born in Calabazar de Sagua, Cuba in 1953. He studied Philology at the University of Havana. He is member of the Mariel Generation, integrated by writers and artist that arrive to the US in 1980, during the Mariel boatlift crisis. Reynaldo has published the books of poetry Escrito a los 20 años (Havana, 1978), winner of the David Poetry Award from the Union of Writers and Artists of Cuba, and La canción de las esferas, awarded with the Letras de Oro literary prize from the University of Miami, and published by Editorial Salvat (Barcelona, 1987). Since 1980, he has contributed to numerous magazines and newspapers in the United States, Latin America and Spain. For over 20 years he has regularly published his columns in the newspaper El Nuevo Herald, where he served as Chief Information Officer until 2012.