MIAMI. USA. JANUARY 27, 2021.
My name is Reynier Ferrer. I was born in Havana, Cuba, in 1979. I live in Miami, Florida. My work is a reaction to the world that surrounds me. Every aspect of my interaction with day-today reality works as a stimulus for my creation. The mix of colors, textures, sounds, movements, people that I encounter in my everyday activity acts like punches or caresses in my mind, and I constantly feel the need to translate them into paintings or drawings.
Tell us your story, how did you come to painting?
I remember always had a somewhat restless mind, which led me to go into ways to express myself, looking for a refuge where I could channelize my whole inner world, which was already manifesting itself unconsciously. Like almost all painters, I started drawing; I remember playing with my older brother where he said a name of an object or animal for me to draw, and then, while I was drawing it, I also created stories, with some kind of humorous. All that I drew was mixed into other objects and figures: I turned numbers into random forms; I found forms in my home walls’ imperfections; I saw battles, dragons, animals, all kinds of scenarios that sometimes even did not let me sleep.
Then, in my adolescence, I continued interested in arts, especially in drawing, which I considered something intimate and direct, a way to create something just mine to recognize me and understand me a little more. I also began to listen to music and channeled all the imagery through my personality, being very extroverted and sometimes quite contradictory to everything around me. I lived my teenage as many others do, at full speed and full of existentialist questions.
When I was near to my 17 years old, thanks to my sister, I met a painter and sculptor named Leo de Lazaro. He showed me an enriching and uncomplicated vision of seeing the world through art. This guidance gave me confidence, which is something that I consider fundamental, especially in the beginning, when every artist questions himself so many things. Everything I learned with Leo had such an impact on me; it greatly influenced my way of seeing life from then on. I decided then to apply to the aptitude tests for the National School of Fine Arts “San Alejandro” in Havana; after this decision, everything changed; there was no turning back…
How would you define your current painting?
I couldn’t do such a thing… When we try to define it, we become more and more entangled in its essence; it would be like trying to explain our mood; we each live it and feel it differently, and no one will really understand what you feel.
Tell us about your style and technique. Any secret that can be told?
I usually work on several paintings simultaneously, alternating them between being on the floor or against the wall. For me, the creative process is vital, straightforward, and at the same time, complex because everything changes, every layer of paint over others takes me to the risk that everything gets covered. Still, I must take those risks to get where I want, or as far as the painting itself asks me to stop. This adrenaline is the part of the process that I enjoy the most, the dialogue and energy created.
I paint while driving my car while walking the streets; always, my stimuli are real things and the everyday experience; also, my moods are still present.
I do not need a sketch to start; I prefer not to be conditioned by anything that limits my creative experience. Sometimes, when I have phrases, forms, or experiences before beginning to paint, they completely change when they manifest themselves during the creative process.
How do you usually start your paintings? With a sketch, a draft or is it just an improvisation?
As I said in the previous question, I try not to create formulas that limit my creative process, quite the contrary, the birth of sensations and moods, as well as other more concrete ideas that change along the way, become something else to the point of not recognizing many times the first forms of the picture.
What are your motivation forces? And the artists who have been and are an influence for you?
I would say that my motivation is nonconformity, bewilderment at life situations, and the need to see and create another type of beauty and create infinite scenarios. The influence on my work comes from all the postwar art, informalism and abstract expressionism, artists such as Antoni Tàpies, Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline, among others, as well as neoexpressionism, especially figures such as Jean-Michel Basquiat, Anselm Kiefer, Julian Schnabel, Philip Guston, Georg Baselitz, Markus Lüpertz.
What can you tell us about your studio, what kind of place is it?
My studio is located in Miami, Florida; it is an industrial warehouse. It is my space of reflection, action, and peace; where I enter and dialogue with all the work that I have hanging on the walls, papers on the floor, and works in process, all this becomes an extension of me.
What is art for you?
A sensorial experience.