“Raul popped down to the CNB Gallery one afternoon last autumn with a vibrant sketchbook rammed, full to bursting, with energetic faces. As we flicked through the pages Raul spontaneously began draw his gestures upon some scrap paper in front of us, an automatic act.
We knew this was what the CNB Gallery was all about. The surge of energy depicted in each gesture is so essential to living in the present, with retaliation to any monotony of the everyday. Prepare to be struck by the liberty and essentiality of Raul’s work that we believe exists far beyond just the walls of our gallery.” Rebecca Lidert
Working from spaces in Miami, London and his home Italian town Pescara, Raul will be previewing a new body of work with us this March. Raul’s previous show We Are. The Revolution (title inspired by the politically active artist Joseph Beuys) was exhibited at the 2011 Miami Art Basel. In both shows Raul uses faces as the form to encapsulate his ethos – an energetic drive, a primordial need to create and contest the society compiled around us. Our creative outputs allow us to escape, to battle, to resist being swept without noise or question through life from ‘A’ to ‘B.’ But, who are the people behind the faces Raul depicts? They are you, me and us. We are the faces that inspire him, the rebellious souls, sometimes masked, that remain fighting.
Look at the CNB Gallery getting all philosophical… As per usual we want to inject some more fun into the Shoreditch arts scene and be accessible to everyone. We believe Raul can do just that whilst also offering a fresh proposition to a sometimes stifling wider society.
A regular adjective to crop up when discussing his work is primitive. But to call these works primitive would be using an outdated mode of categorisation. They are not primitive, but evolving a canonised idea, that of using imagery as a vehicle of emotion.
Maybe there’s a specific face here you can relate to? Raul depicts the faces through gestures that work through contradictions. Confusion and linearity, method and instinct, passion and rigour and, finally, impulse and control. But, the human being is inherently inconsistent so maybe you will surprise yourself by which gestures speak to you. Enjoy.