UTOPIA, 1986, oil on canvas, diptych, 80 x 136 in. 203.2 x 345.4 cm.
Peruvian born artist Ramiro Llona uses color as his instrument for what has been called 'inner landscapes,' where structure and expression coincide. UTOPIA celebrates that color through a unique selection of works from his most important period, the 80s.
In the early 80s, Llona's work was lyrical, young and light. It was his first exploration into abstraction reminiscent of Kandinsky with a taste of new vitality. Penetrando Tierra Santa, 1983, and The Seed, the Golden House, Two Characters, 1983, reflect this innovative movement, and become the first reference to a recurring idea in the future: the home.
As his paintings evolve, the bright colors are less shaded and more homogeneous, opening the door to a controlled geometry with defined spaces. Two Characters and a Shadow, 1984, captures the give-and-take between fluidity and structure, demonstrated when a powerful white-hot light spills into an architectural space. With Utopia, 1986, Llona gathers experiences from the past with new findings. The house, trees, crops and mountains are subjective ideals of those inner landscapes. They accumulate in a flat mass of colors that hold expressive shapes.
In the late 80s, the fight between the linear geometry and the visceral gesture continued to reach monochromatic color fields and two-dimensionality with increasingly solid structures.La Recuperacion de la Casa, 1987, acts as a premonition, immersed in the red domination of 1987-88, bringing the home back to the synthesis of a sublime painting. Its inherent quality is crossed by the lines that reunite space and objects.
This collection of major paintings reviews Llona's evolution of color and space, of his gestural impulse and his knowledge of art history through the 80s.
Born in Peru in 1947, Llona first studied architecture at the Universidad Nacional de Ingeniería, Lima, and in 1977 attended the Escuela de Bellas Artes at the Universidad Catolica, Lima. He continued his artistic training at Pratt Institute, New York. Llona has held numerous international exhibitions throughout the Unites States, Europe and Latin America. In 1977, he was the recipient of the Fullbright Scholarship, New York, and in 1978, the Ford Studio Scholarship, Pratt Institute, New York. Llona currently lives and works in Peru.