California-based painter Robert Gutierrez’s work is usually intimate in scale, intensely colored and finely detailed. A combination of landscape painting, figurative work and abstraction, Gutierrez’s paintings tend to invoke open-ended narratives with a nod to Filipino-folk supernaturalism.
The all-seeing eyes in Untitled (Frog) peer from underneath the budding flower, adding a sense of disquiet to the scene, which might otherwise be overlooked by the lush surroundings. Just when the viewer might recognize a form, the edges bleed like watercolors into the background. In Night Swim, a profile dips into a reflective pool of water, with leafy shadows looming overhead. It’s hard to tell whether the subject is emerging from or descending into the water, leaving the viewer with a notion of deadly calm and silence.
Gutierrez’s work was exhibited in Bay Area Now at The Yerba Buena Center in San Francisco and in solo shows at AMT Gallery, Como, Italy; Ratio3, San Francisco; Irvine Contemporary, Washington DC; and Sister, Los Angeles CA. Gutierrez’s work was also exhibited at White Columns, Deitch Projects, Jeff Bailey, and Cohen and Leslie in New York, as well as at Gregory Lind, New Langton arts, and Southern Exposure in San Francisco. His work is part of the collection of the DESTE Foundation, Athens, Greece, and The New Museum of Contemporary Art’s Altoids Curiously Strong Collection. His work has been reviewed by The San Francisco Bay Guardian, Art in America and Flash Art.
Gutierrez was born in Manila, The Philippines. He currently lives and works in San Jose, CA. He has received his B.F.A. from Otis College of Art and Design in 1994.