Rubén Rodrigo


My name is Rubén Rodrigo I was born forty years ago in Salamanca, Spain. I live in Madrid and share my life with Lola and Lore. I try to delve deeper into the matter and energy that exist in colour, and the dichotomy between its physical nature and the relationships that have been established within us through culture and art history, in a constant dialogue with light and the architectural space, giving importance to the environment, the development of the ellipsis, the pauses, the containment, the effects of time and shadow.

Image courtesy of Rubén Rodrigo

Tell us your story, how did you come to painting?

In my case I was a very early draftsman, but a late painter. I began to paint when I was just starting my degree in Fine Arts, but the most decisive thing when I started my career was my first visit to the Museo Del Prado and the great influence that the works of Velázquez and Goya had on me for the first time.

How would you define your current painting?

In my work there has always been a tendency towards improvisation and a search for the sublime through processes influenced by a certain controlled chance. This chance, mystery and a determined tactile quality, always from the standpoint of lightness, has been present in my work from the beginning. I am currently exploring the formal possibilities of colour in fields that are essentially monochromatic.

I want to reach the maximum level of purity by means of a single stain process (Sumi-e*), letting paint drip and spread across the surface of the canvas in a very liquid state, generating a vibration that varies depending on the luminosity of the background or its chromatic interaction. I am interested in the pulse, the tension, the spirituality and the vitality of the pictorial space.

Image courtesy of Rubén Rodrigo

Tell us about your style and technique. Any secret that can be told?

My only secret is work work and work.  

How do you usually start your paintings? With a sketch, a draft or is it just an improvisation?

It is very important for me to have a mental image of what feeling I would like the work to convey. I try to find the right colour for that feeling and start the work. From the first spot there is a lot of improvisation and the work has to flow naturally. I try to make the works have strength and a lot of energy. That they are surprising and keep a certain amount of strangeness even for myself, that’s why I never do previous sketches.

What are your motivation forces? And the artists who have been and are an influence for you?

Cinema, literature, music and the history of art itself are fundamental motors in my work. I have been influenced by many artists throughout my career, but let’s say that what is important is the moment when each book, film or museum visit arrives. I believe that travelling and being constantly informed is fundamental in an artist’s work, as well as sharing and conversing with other colleagues.

Image courtesy of Rubén Rodrigo

What can you tell us about your studio, what kind of place is it?

My studio is that place that is uncomfortable enough to work without a break since I arrived. I try to work every day with good planning so that I can get the job done without rushing or being overburdened.

What is art for you?

Everything. I have learned as person to see life as an imitation of ART.

Piece with Artist. February 2021. ©

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