It dawns in Havana and Armando Molina (1983) wakes up with a smile. Throughout the night he was visiting dreamlike landscapes impregnated with the most vivid tropical colors, where birds, fish, flowers and female figures become the protagonists. Barely speaking he puts on his work uniform dotted with temperas, he sees me and says; “He is not stained, he keeps the history of other dream landscapes”.
Armando Molina is a young man with great aspirations, a dreamer, he dreams awake and asleep. He imagines his own worlds with their own inhabitants and vegetations. The artist takes us to places never before visited, dreamlike landscapes belonging to other dimensions. Through his paintings the viewer rises and travels from this boring and monotonous reality, to the universe of Armando Molina so beautiful, unreal, magical and his own.
While we talk in his studio, he prepares a palette with the colors that he is going to use for the work: red, orange, yellow, green. He always uses warm colors in his work, why? I ask him. "I like tropical, hot tones because they mean joy, festivity, joy and that's how I feel every time I paint, painting fills me with happiness and I want those who appreciate my work to also get my good vibes", explains Armando without being able stop smiling.
Although his beginnings were empirical, drinking from the knowledge and experience of artist-friends who later became family, Armando recognizes the importance of academic studies for the practice of plastic arts, which is why for two years He entered the San Alejandro National Academy of Fine Arts, the most important educational center of plastic arts in Cuba with a history of more than 200 years.
“From a very young age I began to paint, but without any technique, or knowledge of styles, color scales, or anything like that. I painted what came to mind, what I would like to see and with the colors that were beautiful for me at that moment. However, over the years I realized that if I wanted to make painting my profession, I had to study and learn more about the world of art, both theoretical and practical.”
The criticism that has followed the work of Armando Molina recognizes the evolution in his artistic work through constant work and study. Since his first exhibition in 2005, when he was barely 22 years old and arrived at his local art gallery with his nuanced collages in a dream world, full of creatures conceived in his fantasy and that until today characterizes.
But now, without losing his link with nature, he recreates new places where marine nature unites with earthly nature and his characters appropriate biological analogies of both worlds. Women adorned with foliage and marine elements, birds sailing the seas, who at a certain point reach the representative image of a utopian deity thanks to the visual and expressive force that Armando Molina imprints on his work.
It should be noted that not only his theme offers changes and new forms of interpretation with his already marked surrealist stamp. The neat stroke, the chromatic and compositional organization, the relocation of elements, the incorporation of transparencies, are signs of his evolution. On the other hand, other elements have been maintained and do not give up their space: eroticism, interaction with the human, the irrational, the intentional.
We are convinced that there is a promising future for Armando Molina and his artistic work, marked by great successes, and Oleos & Canvas promises to keep abreast of everything related to this young plastic artist who decided to share his inner worlds and spread festivity to his audience.