Andrés Layos

COLOMBIA
ABOUT THE ARTIST

Andrés Layos, One of Colombia’s most recognised and celebrated artists, graduated with distinction from the University of Fine Arts, Medellín. During the beginning of his career, Layos was fascinated with street culture and exploring the contexts and subcultures within cultures. His work was vivid, brutally honest and raw with emotion.

The abstract and the monstrous are two elements that have influenced his world. Layos is not afraid to create unconventional images of vulnerability in the human condition, such characteristics as the socially rejected, physically impaired, self-destructive and narcissistic. The manifestation of the human and animals he represents, in their habitat and social settings, show deep feelings of avoidance and abandonment. Through his work, Andrés uses multidimensional / multifaceted encryptions to communicate with his audience; he aspires to capture the simultaneous experience. His art is an internal conversation with himself, as well as an ongoing dialogue with art and its complexity. He resists shying away from uncomfortable subject-matters. His images are formed from a subconscious tangle, while at the same time disintegrating into an abstract tangle.

Andrés Layos continues to question the status quo and the paradoxes within commercial - conceptual, social and economic circumstances. Layos has become a specialist in applying two highly demanding techniques in one, individual canvas: drawing and painting. The former involves the rationale of being methodical, rational, disciplined and perceptive. The detail and discipline he shows in his drawing have won him numerous awards and international acclaim. The latter process: painting brings his dark, inner feelings to the surface through an act of catharsis. These two techniques, interwoven into the same canvas act as a dialogue between the delicate and coarse, the good and bad, and light and darkness.

Growing Together: A Unique Series Dedicated To The Touching Bond Between A Father & His Daughter

His darkest images consist of a duality among life and death. Characters with deformities and missing body parts become a phoenix: reborn among the “ash” or dust of the graphite medium are reconstructed and empowered. Drawing with graphite has become a symbolic medium for Layos as it personifies the cold, hard elements of our natural environment and the continuing tensions that exist among life and death.

Growing Together is a series of two-hand drawings; it is a collaborative work between Andrés and his 8-year-old daughter, Valentina Layos. The father daughter artist relationship began in 2010, when Valentina was a mere 3-years-old. Their images tell stories, nostalgic memories and a unique twist on narratives. Valentina is the driving force behind this very special and extraordinary working relationship, she proposes what to draw and takes control of the project, “If she does not feel it, she does not do it!” In short, Andrés describes himself as “her collaborator.” This remarkable series also demonstrates the difference between light and dark, naivety/innocence and the more tainted experienced. It invites the viewer to give an account of the deep bond between father and daughter, art, and pure love. The emotion and deep affection between Andrés and Valentina, father-daughter relationship, is so honest, touching and heart warming that it’s impossible to not be moved by their work.

“If she does not feel it, she does not do it!”