Paradigm Gallery Presents Lucha Rodríguez

Location: Art on Paper Main Floor

Philadelphia’s Paradigm Gallery is pleased to present Sense and Vision, a solo exhibition of works on paper by Atlanta-based Venezuelan-Panamanian artist Lucha Rodríguez. Sense and Vision features four distinct collections of the artist’s “knife drawings”, created with her inventive bas-relief technique on watercolored paper. Abstract forms arise from the optical play of light and shadow over the hand-cut surface of the paper, stimulating the senses, and inviting a synesthetic experience Rodríguez describes as “touching with your eyes”.

Rodríguez begins her work in the studio with a ritualized routine informed by her training as a certified hypnotherapist. The process allows her to access her subconscious and sensory memories, the pursuit of which forms the basis of her practice. Foggy recollections from the deep recesses of the artist’s mind are brought into sharper focus, as she engages her senses, and concentrates on the flickers of clarity that arises. Seemingly insignificant details, like the weight and texture of an object in her hand, or the fleeting smell of a cool breeze, allow fragmented memories to resurface in her consciousness. The color pink, present in all of Rodríguez’s work, serves as a conduit for the sublime, and anchors the act of making in the fleshy warmth of the embodied self. Each cut of the knife requires unwavering precision and dexterity. The methodical rhythm of Rodríguez’s hand and the blade, cut after cut, guides her into a state of flow and awareness.

Art making is, in its essence, a metaphysical act of transformation – a process made visible through Rodríguez’s studio practice. Rodríguez’s work invites slow looking, encouraging viewers to embrace the idiosyncrasy and illusion of perception. In each step toward its actualization, the body of work in the exhibition is rooted in phenomenological experience and sensory knowledge, driven by the artist’s intuition and the ephemeral alignment of mind and body, past and present, Sense and Vision.

About Lucha Rodríguez:

Lucha Rodríguez is a Venezuelan-Panamanian artist based in Atlanta, GA. She received her M.F.A. from Savannah College of Art and Design (Atlanta, GA) and her B.F.A. from The Art Institute of Atlanta (Atlanta, GA). During her career, she has been featured in group and solo exhibitions in the U.S. and internationally in India, Mexico, China, and France. Rodríguez’s work has been exhibited most recently at The National Museum of Women in the Arts (Washington, D.C.), The Museum of Contemporary Art Georgia (Atlanta, GA), Union College Feigenbaum Center for Visual Arts Crowell and West Galleries (Schenectady, NY), Ortega y Gasset Projects (Brooklyn, NY), Telfair Museum (Savannah, GA), and the University of Central Florida (Orlando, Florida). Her work has been featured in Albany Times Union, The Hong Kong Standard, The Nashville Scene, and The Atlanta-Journal Constitution, among others.

Rodríguez has been an artist-in-residence at Wassaic Project (Wassaic, NY), Vermont Studio Center (Johnson, VT), MASS MoCA (North Adams, MA), Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts and Sciences (Rabun Gap, GA) and ChaNorth (Pine Plains, NY). Rodríguez is a 2016 Fulton County Arts and Culture Artist Grant recipient and the 2010 Forward Arts Foundation Edge Award Awardee. In the academic field, Rodríguez has been invited as a visiting artist and guest lecturer at Kennesaw State University, UGA Lamar Dodd School of Art, Emory University as well as a guest lecturer at The Savannah College of Art and Design Lacoste, Hong Kong and Savannah campuses. More recently in 2020 Rodríguez lectured at Union College in Schenectady, NY.