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Jhonatan Pulido

MA work

Weapons

The first encounter I had with a pictorial decision was not in a museum or an art gallery. The graffiti of the illegal armed groups (guerrillas and paramilitaries) in the rural area of my country (Colombia), interfered with the natural marks and ageing of the walls of those houses belonging to the civilian population in an intimidating way. Ironically, this became my first experience of pictorial decision-making in terms of colour, surface and composition. The inhabitants used bright colours to cover up those messages completely. The act of painting and covering a surface became a symbol of resurgence and transcendence for many communities.

My practice seeks to materialise those memories and point to the relationship between painting, architecture and war. The colour palette, structure and composition of my work is reminiscent of this specific place. Images and wall colours are overlapping, vanishing, appearing and disappearing. My paintings are a symbolic act of memory that speaks of the pictorial process itself. An act of memory that transports me to my place of origin.

Info

  • MA Degree

    School

    School of Arts & Humanities

    Programme

    MA Painting, 2019

  • I am looking for the act of painting to acquire more relevance than the beauty of the image or the situation that generates a work. For me, a painting should not merely be a function of the image; the painting should be a function to and for itself.

    The surface becomes a diary that condenses different moments and decisions I take in the studio. Mistakes, successes and discoveries – these are all engaged with there. This is a process of construction and deconstruction, of removing material and putting it on, of falling in love with an idea and then watching it change. Painting is not knowing where to go; it is knowing how to wait, how to obey the surface and listen to what is happening there and act accordingly and in conjunction with the event. For me, painting is a condensation of that type of time.

    I grew up in the Colombian countryside, surrounded by peasants, crops and nature, fresh water, mountains and rocks, but also surrounded by geography atlases and images of old cartographies. However, there was a stark contrast represented by the fear resulting from the Colombian armed conflict. When I approach an image to begin painting, the starting point is always those places and stories that remain deeply etched in my memory.

    My work looks back on to Colombia from its culture and from the structure of its landscape. This constitutes a personal document of my experiences there. It is a direct tool for understanding the landscape, the territory and the relationship between humans and their social environment.

  • Degrees

  • BFA Fine Arts, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Bogotá, 2015
  • Experience

  • Teaching experience, Edinburgh College of Art, University of Edinburgh, 2019; Teaching experience, University of Gloucestershire, Cheltenham, 2019
  • Exhibitions

  • 'Nostalgia', The Old Biscuit Factory Gallery, London, 2018; 'Crossroad', Hoxton 253 Art Project Space, London, 2019; 'Painting from the Other Side', Dyson Gallery, London, 2019; 'Colleges', House of Vans, London, 2019; 'Images can be?', Lumen Crypt Gallery, London, 2018; 'Where Are You in These Interesting Times?', Air Gallery, Scaffold Gallery, Manchester, 2018; 'Gûejar' (Solo show), Pictorial reflections about a stone, 12:00 Gallery, Bogotá, 2016; 'ARIARI' (Solo show), El Garaje Gallery, Bogotá, 2013; 'Negro en Blanco' (Solo show), Guayupe Gallery, German Arciniegas Public Library, Villavicencio, 2012
  • Awards

  • Shortlisted, Chadwell Award, 2019; Grant, Artist in residence, Palazzo Stabile, Castelleto Molina, Italy, 2018; RCA Fund International Scholarship
  • Conferences

  • Artist Talk, Edinburgh College of Art, University of Edinburgh, 2019; Artist Talk, University of Gloucestershire, Cheltenham, 2019