"I'd describe my work as contemporary with Andean roots. I try to transmit the communion of Andean man with nature."
Born April 9, 1944 in Ayacucho, Víctor Raúl Cárdenas is a graduate of the prestigious Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes del Perú. Generations of artists have studied there, and Cárdenas is an illustrious product of this Peruvian institution.
Cárdenas has not abandoned the figurative and Andean presence of what we might call the "thesis in his canvases." But his magnificent academic formation permits him to easily discriminate with sure, firm strokes that are also light. The faces, the corporal expression of his characters, even the gesture of the brush to establish the landscape, the shadows, the apus (earth spirits) like guiding hills, the sky and the way he handles color are hallmarks of Cárdenas' style. With the peculiar playfulness he imposes on some of the elements in the foreground, the viewer suddenly recognizes the artist in the presence of doves or hats. Cárdenas excels at this development of the abstract from the figurative, in other words, working toward the antithesis, where he sometimes remains. Thus he stands in the three dialectic moments sustained throughout the evolution of art in the 20th century – thesis, antithesis and synthesis.
Cárdenas has shown himself to be a serious professional painter. He has worked at his art since 1963. "I'd describe my work as contemporary with Andean roots," he says. "I try to transmit the communion of Andean man with nature. My vocation for art, my people and our landscapes provide my motivation." To his Novica friends, he says, "I'm glad you are interested in the works and culture of artists from other latitudes."
Raúl Cárdenas has shown his work widely over the past four decades, throughout Peru as well as in Italy, Holland, Switzerland, Spain and the U.S.