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Painting is silent poetry, and poetry is painting that speaks. Simonides

Sergio Garval

Sergio Garval nace en Guadalajara Jalisco México el 13 de junio de 1968. Es egresado de la carrera de pintura de la Escuela de Artes Plásticas de a Universidad de Guadalajara, 1987-1992. 
 En Noviembre de 1997 tomó un curso avanzado de pintura, impartido por el maestro Luis Nishizawa, Museo del Pueblo, Guanajuato.
 En Julio de 1999 en el Summer Studio Residency New York, School of Visual Arts, New York New York, USA.

 1994-1995 Becario de Consejo Estatal para la Cultura y las Artes. Jalisco, México.
 2003-2004 Becario Jóvenes Creadores CONACULTA – FONCA

Premios y menciones

1994 Premio de adquisición de escultura II concurso de escultura el Caballo. Escuela de Artes Plásticas, Universidad de Guadalajara.
 Premio de adquisición de Pintura, II concurso de pintura, El caballo. Escuela de Artes Plásticas, Universidad de Guadalajara.
 Mención honorífica de pintura, categoría “Salón de octubre”. Guadalajara, Jalisco.
 2º.Lugar de grabado “Salón de octubre”. Guadalajara, Jalisco.
 2º. Lugar de dibujo, “Salón de octubre”. Guadalajara, Jalisco.

1995 1er. Lugar de dibujo, “Salón de octubre”. Guadalajara, Jalisco.
1998 Mención honorífica escultura, Premio Omnilife. Guadalajara, Jalisco.
 Primer premio de adquisición de pintura, Premio Omnilife. Guadalajara, Jalisco.
2001 Premio de adquisición en grabado, Gran Premio Omnilife. Guadalajara, Jalisco.
2002 Premio de adquisición X Concurso Nacional de grabado, José Guadalupe Posadas 2002. Aguascalientes, Aguascalientes.
 Premio de adquisición, gráfica. X Bienal de grabado y dibujo Diego Rivera 2002. Guanajuato, Guanajuato.
2003 Presea Alfredo Zalce”. Cuarta Bienal De Pintura y Grabado Alfredo Zalce. Morelia, Michoacán.
 Mención Honorífica. XI Concurso Nacional de grabado, José Guadalupe Posadas, Aguascalientes, México.
2004 Premio de Adquisición. Premio Guadalajara 2004. Guadalajara, Jalisco. México.

Artist Biography

 My encounter with his more than dramatic work made me deduce that the effectiveness of an art piece happens when it makes intellect and sensitivity collide. It is then when a knot begins to disentangle, something that otherwise would pass unnoticed among the vastness of images that overwhelm us every day. The aesthetic emotion that Sergio Garval’s work provokes in us is radical despite the harshness of the subjects he dares to depict. His are that kind of pieces that one cannot easily let go.

 I’ve started to discover slowly that this artist born in Guadalajara , Jalisco in 1968 is interested in the behaviour of groups of the masses. I have also confirmed, after looking his paintings once and again, that there is a rather evident displacement from a common focus which is always centred in one person within a main scene ; he focuses in the collective reaction to what is happening to one individual. This is one of his most original and interesting proposals in comparison with his colleague’s work. Garval’s will to take us to raped public spaces is shocking, they are a series of environments where there isn’t a safe, healing private space. He has worked recently in Ants, a series of shocking scenes about certain collective behaviours that approach people to animals. Works like Just another day faces the fact that crimes happen daily in the world, depicting it through inks on the white canvas that make his drawing skills stand out. The bird’s eye view that he enjoys using so much highlights the idea of animal behaviour of groups of people by reducing and minimizing the human figure turning it to grotesque, to what is no related to politeness. I should also mention that his representation of people in trolleys also respond to a sociological analysis of individuals and not to the need of showing their personal, intimate tragedies.

 Another subject of the several series that Garval proposes to the world is Flesh, a rather powerful and everlasting matter which is sometimes overlooked in Art history. Despite the fact that in recent times the morbidness of the body has been presented in galleries and museums through the work of artists such as Lucien Freud, Francis Bacon and Jenny Saville (very remarkable in this matter), Mexican artists have not showed a particular interest in the matter of flesh in the ennoble, not artistic aspect of it.

 About six years ago, some exhibitions as illustrative as El cuerpo aludido (The quoted body) at Mexico’s MUNAL (National Museum of Art) arose the curiosity of some enthusiasts of the truth as supreme value, but any progress in the appreciation of the bulkiness or uninhibitions of the body has been slow. We can therefore say that incarnations fearlessly created and pasted by Garval have marked an important milestone in the history of Mexican contemporary art. It is a territory that very few deal with.

 In his paintings, flat finishing and gradual corporal transitions make way to impulsive, kind of expressionist brushstrokes. Garval breaks the notion of good taste (noble gestures, continued fluency of movements and harmonic relations among strain and flexibility of anatomy). He is interested in unmasking and weighing up moral values referred to his own doctrine not as imitator of reality but as a translator of it. His is a more intellectual than mechanic activity, thus he destroys, fragments and torments. He cries out crisis.

 We’re living in a Manichean world, in a reductionist culture where simple languages, easy works, trouble-free classifications are looked after. That’s what some galleries and museums privilege to fulfil the market. Contrary to that, Garval’s work gives us back full humanity since it refuses to participate in the limitations of the media-managed image; meanwhile, he solves the matter in an outstanding way at the same time that he pleases us with his keen artistry of both the graphic space and the human figure. By daring to enter into the dark side, the shade that Jung talked about, he touches a sore spot in contemporary culture with a very refreshing proposal.

 By Maria Helena Noval

Ana Luisa Kaminski

Nasceu em Erechim em 1961
Vive em Florianópolis, Brasil
Cursou Letras (UFSC)

Luis Lorenzana

"I am a very restless man. I wish my body can keep up with what my mind creates every second. Millions of images continue flashing in my head all the time, even when I am asleep, and I couldn’t stop them. I see the world as one huge canvas, and my mind automatically converts into colors, forms, shades, brushstrokes all things that my eyes had laid upon, the stories I’ve heard, and feelings and emotions that I’ve felt."


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