Artist Review March 2009 by Carol Fischer-Rosenthal
I absolutely love the way Luis surrounds his subject whether animal or human with the most amazing patterns that have wonderful 3-demensional effects and create a very moving environment for his subject matter. The woman's faces are extraordinary.....they are people you are curious about and want to know and understand their story. They have inner depth to them......not just a pretty face,but a real living, breathing, thinking, person who speaks to you.....their lives exposed somehow by the bold reality of the way they are painted. The abstract patterns that form their world furthur tell a story that we can puzzle over and wonder about forever. The animals are magnificently executed, and they have inner depth too,and you feel their hearts beating. You feel the lions and cheetah's are thinking about the world, their condition, or some higher resolve. They are beyond the ordinary animal roaming the jungle or plains....they seem to possess a higher power that is almost human-like.
Ico Gallery Artist Review Jan. 2009
by Andrew Beckerman
We can begin to look at Luis Velasquez’ art from two vantage points that are perhaps incommensurable, or at least incommensurable from a single rigid outlook, and this is perhaps what is interesting about his artworks. On one hand, there are the figurative components to his paintings which – with flourishes here and there, say the expressionistic colors of “Sleepless Dream” or the cutout quality of the woman in “Vigil in Unity” – very much come out of a long tradition, and thus have ties that go back hundreds of years. The figurative elements of his works, the women and the cats, establish themes that tentacle their way backwards through romanticism and primitivism.At the same time, and within each artwork, there is a facet of abstractness that incongruously plays off of the figurative forms though. It is a difficult proposition to attempt to force these two aspects into unity with each other, though they certainly are in communion. The figurative elements anchor Velasquez’ work in a way that allows the free-form or essentially non-form elements to wind their way around vine like throughout the paintings. Whether this is a conscious ecological element that in the end reinforces the naturalness of the subjects or whether they indeed stand apart from that nature is perhaps undecidable.
Tremendous strength, power, and beautiful gradations of warm colors. I love the bull image coming out of this fabulously strong enviroment of bold shapes with wonderful color. I feel the strength of the bull, yet his vulnerability as well,and feel he is doomed despite his power and ferocity, and that makes me sad. Luis really knows his colors, and his shading is superb. I wish that killing the bull wouldn't be a part of Spanish culture, but at the same time, I know that the bull represents, at least in the bull fighting arena, a challenge to the manhood of the bullfighter. In Luis's painting, the bull is emerging from this almost architectural type place and he is coming at us with fierce determination. I absolutely love the warm golden colors. It does bring back memories of me in Mexico when I went running out of the bullfight because I couldn't bare to see the bull being tortured. Luis's painting luckily does not depict that, but shows the bull in all his furociousness despite his vulnerabilities. It is a very sensitive painting, with colors that show passion and love.