"Open Letter to the Benevolent Order of Bucolics Anonymous" | Jose-Maria Cundin

Callan Contemporary

518 Julia St

March 7- June 12th, 2020

Arcimboldo The Marvelous and His Model, 2019
oil on canvas
63h x 95w in



Apocryphal Aztec Portrait of Hernan Cortes, 2019
oil on canvas
63h x 95w in


Apocryphal Portrait of Giuseppe Arcimboldo (detail), 2019
oil and gold leaf on board
44.50h x 38.50w in

Apothesosis of the Triumphant Sanity, 2019
oil on canvas
61h x 92w in



Maclvar Condensation, 2019
oil on canvas
60h x 76w in

Maclvaria - Birthday 
oil on linen
52 X 58

Maclvaria - Kisses 
oil on canvas
52h x 58w in

The Magnificent Morgus in his Lab, 2019
oil on canvas
48h x 72w in

The Bedside Table of Hieronymus Bosch, 2018
oil on canvas
50h x 60w in

Still Life, 2019
oil and gold leaf on board
38.50h x 44.50w in


Press Release

OPENING RECEPTION : Saturday, March 7 th 6 -9 PM
EXHIBITION DATES : March 5th - June 12th, 2020

In his eighth solo exhibition with Callan Contemporary, internationally renowned artist José-María Cundín debuts a suite of new oil paintings that evoke the traditions of Surrealism, Abstract Expressionism, and absurdist humor. He imagines the paintings as emissaries to a future in which a society of nature lovers has banded together in the wilderness to escapethe trappings of technology.

Away from the cities, he predicts, men and women will rediscover the “innocent nobility and awesome regenerative qualities” of the countryside and build a more authentic way of life. Brimming with whimsy and subtle wit, the works incorporate art-historical references (as in “The Bedside Table of Hieronymus Bosch”),  regional pop-culture touchstones (as in “The Magnificent Morgus in his Lab”), and the legacy of the
conquistadores (as in “The Apocryphal Aztec Portrait of Hernán Cortés”), all in Cundín’s signature visual vocabulary of floating gestures and color fields that suggest, but do not literally depict, figures and forms. A different, purely abstract trio of paintings features clusters of coalescing forms superimposed atop backgrounds of vivid color. In both bodies of work, the paintings share a sense of exuberance, intrigue, and gentle satire.

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