2016 Hunting Prize finalist and native Houstonian, Justin Garcia, attended the University of Houston Bauer Business School but soon realized this was not the right direction for him and returned to his first passion: painting. Through art Garcia began his struggles to understand himself and his surroundings and to search for a personal truth. For two years he painted in a boating storage unit with all his belongings stacked in the back. As he sought a path with a deeper meaning, he taught himself by making mistakes through exploration and experimentation.
In the ensuing years, Garcia released seven series of work and following the seventh series, he took two years away from the art scene to analyze and document what he learned. With the effort of these seven series and a depth of experience behind him, he spent several months isolated in central Mexico. There he mapped and constructed blueprints for a theoretical model called Humanity’s Sustainable Infinite (HSI). In late 2015 he announced the completion and publication of his first book, One Ton Goldfish: In Search of the Tangible Dream, a retrospective of his seven series in which Garcia’s personal truth carried some universal meaning.
Art is an expression of the mind’s endless creativity, a doorway to everything in which humans are engaged. My work is the continuous result of studying a single question: Why?
― Justin Garcia
My work is about process through three cognitive phases: experience, awareness and control. I build, strip down and then rebuild the physical structure of the artwork using the constructs of color, shape, depth and movement in an impasto style of layering and thin staining. These processes reveal nuances that give insight to moments that become memories in time. Each subtle mark is a story that lies before the viewer and brings them to stillness with their inner curiosity. Aesthetics play the role of host, inviting the viewer’s mind into the work; curiosity is the fuel that stimulates our evolution.
This is an ongoing study that uses the relationship of art and science to understand both the physical and mental processes of evolution. The full spectrum of my approach uses Eastern and Western Philosophy along with Anatomy, Physiology, Psychology, Physics, Metaphysics, and Quantum Cognition. In addition, my work and philosophy include several underlying business practices which provide a balance of how reality and the subconscious interact and where each field connects.
The process of layering within each work mirrors the sensation of layers in reality and the act of staining serves as memories in the subconscious. The tangible art that is created through this exploration of process becomes a footnote left behind during my journey. Every work is part of a series, every series is part of a larger whole that is created and analyzed for the purpose of deeply exploring the fundamental building blocks humanity collectively climbs in order to evolve.
“Walls of Time,” my eighth series, focuses on the complexity of time and the human perception of it through the simplicity of aging walls as architectural structures representing reality. It is precisely the walls all around us that bring a sense of solace when confronting concepts of time and its infinite effect.