By High Talk and Rumors
Study for the Poet King
The paintings of Julio Larraz are realistic landscapes and precise still lives – strong images in tropical colors, mystical and metaphorical. Study for the Poet King is a fascinating figurative work with the poet typing away while his papers fly with the wind, shaded by the wing of his plane recently landed on the beach. Through his use of light and shadow, land and sky, the poet’s white suit, the table and white cloth Larraz creates the visual reality… and the viewer wants to know the meaning.
I like to think that the poet was flying and became so inspired that he had to immediately land to capture the words that were flying around in his head…only to be now flying away in the wind. He is so absorbed he does not even realize we are looking at him. And we keep looking because the painting has great balance, contrasts, colors and universal location with an untold story.
Born in Cuba in 1944, Julio Larraz is considered one of the greatest living Latin American artists, but his career developed almost entirely in the United States. The influences of the American realists, O’Keefe, Homer and Hopper are revealed in his carefully crafted scenes with half hidden figures or architecture, comments on political situations and humor.