new-york

Enrique Martínez Celaya

Ramis Barquet

For Enrique Martínez Celaya, as for the Romantics, imagination is a faculty of perception, one that unlocks the mysterious world loosely referred to as spiritual. Apprehended in rare moments, the forms of this world are at once allusive and singular, familiar and private, perceptible and fleeting. “Unreal” in the rationalist sense, they are nonetheless the portents on which the quality of our living seems most deeply to depend.

Celaya’s recent exhibition, “Drafts of a Landscape,” featured large, primarily white paintings on black velvet, as well as more intimate works on paper. A master of texture, the Cuban artist uses velvet to conjure a sense of translucent depth in which seemingly alien or angelic beings—by turns fierce, staid, menacing, and gentle—inhabit the auras of the solitary, often ghostly human forms that dominate the canvases. Mostly depicting inky, brackish landscapes haunted

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