Waltman Ortega Fine Art presents “Metallic", a solo exhibition of works by Jorge Enrique. The new show is comprised of mixed media works on metal and paper and sculptural installation. The exhibition opens to the public on November 14, 3-7 p.m. and remains on view through December 16, 2015.

In the most recent works by Jorge Enrique, the idea of beauty is at the center of the artist’s practice. While Enrique’s artwork of the last two decades communicated the irony that minimalist and abstract works could actually represent the deconstruction of an unforgiving cacophonous urban environment, and the gritty “truth” of graffitied texts and images could not be trusted, beauty in Enrique’s work has always been present.

Drawn to the intellectual spareness of abstraction and conceptualism, Enrique nevertheless uses a wide range of media – drawing, painting, silkscreen, monoprints, layered lifted images, sculpture and installation. And Enrique’s practice is very much concerned with materials – shaping wood, sheet metal, paper, paint, epoxy, and resin into complex objects that undermine the ordinariness of their materials. These works are deliberate palimpsests - artworks whose history can be seen through the eroded exposure of under layers, visible by erasing, abrading, scraping and layering. The complex physicality of Enrique’s surfaces recalls ideas of age, decay, re-use, hidden images, and layers of meaning.

Enrique’s art both questions and embraces the theoretical dialogue of postmodernist works. His most recent works have a finished balance and a formalist elegance. With rigorous attention to line, symmetry, surface and texture, while experimenting with scale, serial repetition, color and reflection, these artworks encourage the viewer to revel in the layered, gestural complexity of paint and surface, the concept of beauty, the role of beauty in culture and society, and its presence in contemporary art.

Enrique’s series “Metallic” blurs the distinction between image and object, and between painting and sculpture. Enrique’s paintings and sculptures are the culmination of decades of making art about ideas. They are part of Enrique’s art history – steps along a trajectory from conceptual projects and text-object works to paintings that resonate as culturally loaded signs. The polished complexity of Enrique’s paintings and the linear, snaking nature of his sculptures set up a tension between object and void. Their repetition when installed in groups owes much to the influence of minimalist work from a half century ago.

These works explore the synthesis of opposites: controlled and spontaneous, rational and intuitive, represented and real, truth and fiction, permanent and ephemeral. They combine the purity of abstract visual experience with the primal exuberance of saturated color, glass-like glimmering surfaces, and flashes of metallic reflection.

For all their beauty – whether deeply subsumed, layered and abraded paintings or twisting, attenuated painted sculptures – these artworks offer the viewer more than meets the eye.

Jorge Enrique was born in Havana in 1960. He began his academic studies in Studio Art at the Alfred C. Glassell Jr. School of Art at the Museum of Fine Arts in, Houston. Enrique's work has been exhibited in Europe and the United States and is included in important permanent collections such as La Fondation Villa Datris Museum in Paris and L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue (France) and the Bernard Magrez Cultural Institute in Bordeaux, and others. Jorge Enrique lives and works in Miami.

Wendy M. Blazier

Wendy M. Blazier is an art historian, writer and independent curator active in South Florida for more than 30 years as a museum curator, administrator and lecturer. A Detroit, Michigan native, Ms. Blazier served as Executive Director and Curator at the Art and Culture Center of Hollywood, Florida 1979-1995 and as Senior Curator at the Boca Raton Museum of Art 2001-2012.