Jorge A. Guzmán
39 Wellington Street
Hempstead, NY 11550
I was born in El Salvador and I am an accountant by profession. After completing public auditing courses at the University of José Simeón Cañas (UCA) in El Salvador, I graduated as a public accountant. I have 30 years' experience in that profession. I've been living in Hempstead, Long Island for the past 10 years. I currently work as an accountant and advisor on a part-time basis in my own business concern, "JG Consultant Advisor", through which I promote and develop projects focused on the development of culture and the arts.
Concurrently with the above, I've been working on my artistic career. My grandfather was an artist and I inherited from him that talent. In 1995, I had the chance to meet the master Armando Solís, one of the icons of plastic arts in El Salvador. In addition to attending his academy for two years, where I learned from him the theory of art, color, light, shadow and other techniques, I was a close friend of his. As of the date of this writing, I have 15 years' experience in that field.
At the beginning, given the limited possibilities and obstacles that existed for an incipient artist in El Salvador, I did not visualize art as a career, as painting was viewed as a plain hobby to be shared with family and friends.
Once in the USA, it was the same story. Lacking financial resources, unfamiliar with the rules of the North American legal and community systems and faced with the need to cover my primary living expenses, I was forced to work in another capacity in order to survive. Thus, the development of my artistic career became a second priority.
Nevertheless, my artistic inclination prompted me to exchange ideas with other artists and share with them their goals and frustrations because of the lack of support from their communities, institutions and organizations. It was in this manner that I learned of the conditions and restrictions that public and private organizations that can help to spread art impose on renowned and incipient artists. I had the opportunity to meet hidden talents, whose works had remained in their basement for twenty years because of the lack of opportunity to realize themselves as artists and had to work in order to survive.
Moreover, I was able to assess the Latin American community's socioeconomic environment, thus visualizing one of its problems: a youth that our future depends on and who unfortunately is at the mercy of street gangs because of having dropped out of school, domestic violence or family break-up.
As a result, I saw the need to promote cultural roots for the community to recover forgotten values, such as those of the family, the nucleus of our society. To engender friendship and unity in order to reach higher goals in the North American society that shelters us and gives the opportunity to grow, an opportunity that we miss because of our inability to work in concert, to seek professional and artistic self-realization.
Several reasons lead me to the development of a cultural program called Ikarus Gallery. Promote the artistic career and the causes of our society, use art as a means to prevent violence, recover the image of a hard working community stigmatized by the scourge of gangs, incorporate other artists with the same ideals, and offer those artists opportunities for development and support.
The program's name is inspired in the Greek mythological legend of Icarus, who attempted to fly in order to reach the Olympus, the place where his gods lived. I identify myself with that character, as in my view wings represent the means to fulfill our dreams and goals; the shrewdness to construct them and overcome all obstacles with dedication, painstaking care, dexterity, willpower, unity, the desire to be the best while remaining humble.
Our plans for the future:
Create friendship bonds with other artists.
Promote our vision and ideals in search of unity, thus being prepared to overcome obstacles. Project to other levels the idea that unity leads to strength.
Establish work alliances with non-profit organizations associated with the arts, culture, causes common to the youth and childhood, or looking for the economic development of minority groups, where the arts may contribute to their goals and play an important role.
Expand the Ikarus Gallery Cultural Program, creating and developing projects for humanitarian reasons together with other artists.
Look for sponsors that may provide the funds necessary to maintain the program alive or a means to advertise the work of artists.
JGuz that is the way I sign my artwork. I define myself as a self-taught artist. I use the oil technique and acrylic, Chinese ink, mix media and watercolor. In addition, I do digital art and make sculptures.
My sources of inspiration are the environment that surrounds me, my personal experiences and family, my ideals and the vision to create a message inviting others to reflect. My challenge, the search of myself as an artist, whatever makes me irreverent of the common or traditional standards that other artists use, sketches, a defined palette of colors, rules of background and shape, symmetry or theme. I don't use a preconceived idea for the performance of my work. I search for it during the process of the work itself. I prefer to use colors in their pure state, not diluted or previously mixed, such that during the process of toning or when using a spatula, they mix together and capricious tones and unimaginable textures come up.
The use of acrylic gesso is present in the abstract style for the construction of symbols or figures which, when combined with vivid colors give life to the figure that emerges or allows it to be vaguely seen.
Roots and chains often appear in some of my works. The roots will not forget where we came from. The chains do not represent subjugation, is a symbol of unity and integration.