Demato Gallery’s Wild Things
An intimacy exists in Daniel Esquivia-Zapata's finely detailed portraits, in which sitters appear unguarded, as though they are close friends or family members of the artist. Done in graphite, gesso, and black Conté crayon, his works are often composed of multiple sheets of Mylar or acetate, which overlap to create tiered edges. In most portraits, a newspaper appears, its pages blanketing the floor, crumpled into a ball, or covering the subject's body. This allusion to text suggests the importance of narrative histories and stories preserved through time. In Mi Hermano el Historiador (My brother the historian) (2010), this allusion to the past is further established, though its effect is painful: a man sits in a chair with his hands tied behind his back, his mouth open in a scream, while newspaper pages press against his body and constrict his throat.
Colombian, b. 1987