Boffill at La Conexión
By Cindi Shipley
Boffill was born Orlando Boffill Hernandez in Havanna , Cuba, October 16, 1964. He came to San Miguel in December of 2011. In Havanna, Boffill sold large series of paintings to Spain, Portugal, France, Germany, Australia, the United States and Mexico.
Art: Paintings by Boffill. Mon, Mar 19, 5-8pm. La Conexión, Aldama 3
His techniques consist of acrylic on canvas and paper, mixed media, and assemblages.
His paintings are an expression of his personal experiences with the human condition. He paints what he sees and does not claim to be political at all. However, he comments that “everything is political” and that “an artist is only a sensitive portrayer of life that exists around him.”
His painting has evolved during the short time he has been in San Miguel, (partly because this is the first time he has left Cuba). The colors derive from the tropical influence of Cuba, to a more fluid and understated, sometimes haunting, theme.
The compositions are minimalist and geometric with Cubist and surrealistic influences. He is also influenced by expressionism whose essential theme is man.
As early as he can remember, Boffill loved painting, and like many artists, he received little encouragement from his family, who would have preferred a medical or legal career for their only son. However, his passion was so great that the fire could not be extinguished. When he finished high school, he served the obligatory three years in the Cuban army, working on artillery exploration. Then he returned to the university at the Lic. Historia Del Arte En La Faculdad De Artes y Letras. He spent five years studying art and ended with a master’s degree in Art History.
His first job was with the gallery De Arte de Capitalino DeLa viborno, where he served as a curator, art critic and advisor to the artists.
He left these jobs after five years to pursue painting as his sole career. He sold a painting almost immediately to an art collector in Germany. Since then he has participated in more than 40 expositions worldwide, along with at least 10 personal exhibitions in Cuba.
Lic. Conrado de la Torre, a specialist of Nader Gallery, in Coral Gables, Miami, said:
“In Boffill’s masterpiece paintings there is a balance between the craft and the concept. The craft expressed through its commitment to traditional painting techniques, and achievement of an exquisitely refined surface with an aesthetic definition of spaces, perspective and graphics. Boffill’s work is post-modern and has a hidden link to the Italian Transavangarde… a link manifested not only by the historical nature of his painting but also for the use of representation of typical people and concrete objects that evoke a practical reality….”
The year of 2004 was very important to the artist because he began to work with Jesus Mira, an important and influential art dealer, who acquired more than 30 works by Boffill. He promotes Boffill’s work now in Spain, Miami and formerly in Mexico too. Partly due to this promotional work, Boffill received attention from art critics internationally. One professional art magazine entitled REVISTART, produced in 2006, in it’s 111th edition, is an article written by the art critic Maria Mateo. The lengthy article, called “Orlando Boffill. Estado Organico,” said about Boffill’s paintings that:
“Its themes are self-references as a social being in context with the characteristics of an insular island of a third world country of mixed races and cultures. The notion of continuity in the paintings of Boffill explain the experience like the interaction between organisms and environment: uncut without separation. There is the phenomenon in the figures and background of Boffill’s paintings where there is a front and back, but no individual entities exist. Instead there is a continuity between the bodies, a constant dynamism of transparencies, lines and spaces in reciprocal relationships…”