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Fernando Cabrera Gonzalez: Illuminating hope through artistic resilience

In the realm of contemporary art, painter Fernando Cabrera Gonzalez is trying to be a beacon of creativity. With a blend of cultural influences and personal experiences, his artwork transcends mere aesthetics.

"I had done drawings, but there was something about oil painting that I just couldn't describe. It felt like freedom," Gonzalez said.

Early Life

Born in 1990 in Mexico, Gonzalez grew up with his brother and mother, and occasionally was visited by his father, who worked in the United States. Despite the challenges of language barriers and cultural transitions upon relocating to the United States at the age of 11, Gonzalez found solace and self-expression through painting. He began using his imaginative skills in his backyard, which became a playground of imagination and the foundation of his artistic vision laying the foundation for his artistic vision. 

“It was basically me and my brother in this big backyard, you know, so a lot of our games were kind of imaginary,” Gonzalez said. “You know, we had to come up with things to do that weren't really there.”

Introduction to Art

During his high school years, Gonzalez experimented with oil painting, discovering a sense of self-liberation. As Gonzalez navigated the challenges of growing up and adapting to , art became his safe haven — a space where language barriers disappeared. His emotions could be expressed with not only clarity, but beauty.

“It was a turbulent time. I had come to the United States. I didn't know the language fully. I was made fun of because of my accent sometimes of trying to, you know, speak the language,” he said. “It felt like through art, there was none of that. There were no language barriers or all because it's a completely new language.”

Awards

Gonzalez's artistic expertise garnered widespread recognition including the AXA XL Art Prize, which seeks to shine a spotlight on the re-emergence of figurative art and as of yet undiscovered stars of its future. This accolade served as a testament to his expanding talent. 

"Being selected as a finalist for the AXA XL Art Prize was a surreal moment for me,” Gonzalez said. “It boosted my confidence and reassured me that I was on the right path.”  

Exhibit

These days, Gonzalez stands on the precipice of a new milestone: the unveiling of his inaugural solo exhibit, "Birth of Tuki." A culmination of years of introspection and creative exploration, the collection encapsulates the essence of Gonzalez's artistic journey. Inspired by the presence of a bird named Tuki during his tumultuous transition to the United States, the exhibit serves as an ode to resilience, hope and the power of art.

"With 'Birth of Tuki,' I wanted to create something that resonates with people on a deep, emotional level,” Gonzalez said. “It's not just about the visuals; it's about the stories and emotions behind each piece."

Through vibrant hues and vivid imagery, Gonzalez invites viewers to find solace and inspiration.

"Art is not just about what you see on the canvas; it's about what it makes you feel,” Gonzalez said. “My hope is that 'Birth of Tuki' inspires people to embrace hope and resilience, even in the face of adversity.”


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