José R. Aponte Bernardy, SJ
Puerto Rico, Spanish Caribbean
My practice as an artist, grew up at the Caribbean crossroads. Puerto Rico is a land of “mestizaje”, mixed race, an island on the shifting borders of empires. I learned from the world in an area diverse as it is precarious and idilic as it is intense. The natural beauty of the Caribbean landscapes is complemented by the mixture of races, traditions and culture. There are so many tones under an unforgiving sun. Music, rhythms, food, perfumes, colors and traditions have created the narratives that lingers into my memory.
Unpredictability and ephemerality are constant in the Caribbean. If you live in paradise… you have to endure the challenges: hurricanes, earthquakes and governments, local and imperial, because the Caribbean is one of the empires battlegrounds since the arrival of Columbus.
This selection of works is a reflection on the different spaces for contemplation: landscape, people, home, myself. Painting helps me to look deeper and to continue on my intellectual curiosity and interest for the years to come. Paint becomes the malleable medium that helps me to reflect what it is in my mind and how I can engage with it outside my body and to share it with the rest of the world.
2020 Masters Fine Arts, Painting and Drawing, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA .
2018 Post Baccalaureate Certificate in Studio, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA.
2000 Master of Theology, Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley, Santa Clara University, California, USA.
1999 Baccalaureate in Theology, Universidad Pontificia Comillas, Madrid, Spain.
1993 Baccalaureate in Arts, Universidad de Puerto Rico, San Juan, Puerto Rico.