Subscribe To the newsletter

Iván Carmona


As a boy, I learned about Modernism through magazines and TV documentaries. It was there that I was introduced to the work of Isamu Noguchi and Alexander Calder, and began to recognize their forms in the natural world around me. The mountains and forests of Puerto Rico became sculptural constructions and swaying mobiles in my mind, and through my own visual language, I hope to communicate these intimate moments in a manner accessible to a larger audience. A shape, word, texture, or color can activate potent memories, and this sense of nostalgia is key to a reading of my work. The sculptures are abstracted, they aren’t one-to-one representations. Instead, each emotional memory is passed through the sieve of Modernism, creating connections between my remembrances and recollections of the past and the timeline of art history.

Looking back at a particular moment, I might remember a specific shape, color, or feeling. Through the years, these memories take on a life of their own. They expand and contract, shapes soften and blur, and colors push through to become more vibrant. By working with clay, a product of nature, I am able to make the immaterial physical. The unifying effect of flat, rich color helps to amplify the presence of even the smallest object, and serves to highlight its curves, angles, and planes. Each of my works pulls the past forward into a new body for the present to see. By creating these physical manifestations, I can remember, reflect upon, and share my histories with the world.