Selected Works

Installation Shots

Born in 1984 in The Bronx, New York, Anthony Rondinone, an American artist, spent his formative years in a time when The Bronx was still the outskirts of Manhattan, housing poor immigrant families in the concrete embrace of a challenging urban landscape. Growing up shoulder to shoulder, amidst the persistent presence of roaches, rats, and occasional muggings, NYC offered a tough environment that shaped Rondinone’s perspective. The city, with its colorful characters and the complexities of poverty, became the backdrop for his artistic journey.

Rondinone’s upbringing in this dangerously romantic cinder block city instilled a resilience that concealed true emotions, fostering a sense of isolation even amidst a bustling community. This pressure found release in various forms, contributing to the birth of influential music, food, and culture emerging from the boroughs of New York.

As an artist, Rondinone delves into the intricacies of his subjects, treating them like characters in a movie, exploring different avenues of thought to grasp the essence of the moments he captures. Through the use of abstract figures and characters from pop culture, he initiates conversations about mental health and other social issues relevant to his community. Works such as the Marge Simpson Series (The Simpsons) and the Cookie Monster Series (Sesame Street) tackle the concepts of the “housewife” in low-income America and the various facets of addiction, respectively. Each character serves as a representation of a societal type or issue that the artist seeks to understand.

Rondinone’s expressive portraits serve as a tool to convey the raw emotions prevalent in poor immigrant communities, addressing themes of addiction, isolation, depression, and anger. By prompting self-reflection, the artist encourages viewers to establish a personal connection with the characters depicted, facilitating a deeper understanding of themselves and others. In capturing the darker side of the human experience, Rondinone unveils the beauty within sadness and the complexity of the human condition.

In his artist’s statement, Rondinone describes himself as an observer with a keen ability to understand people, a skill honed through empathy. He uses painting as a stream of consciousness, allowing the paint to flow as he navigates through different topics and conversations. Avoiding taking sides, Rondinone aims to prompt viewers to contemplate and connect with the characters in his works, fostering a thoughtful engagement with the issues he addresses. The unpredictability of the artistic process mirrors the complexity of the topics he explores, culminating in pieces that resonate with personal and societal reflections.

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