Biography

César Alfonso is a physician, artist and educator. He was born in Cuba and spent his formative years in Havana, Madrid and San Juan. He studied art history, literature and biology at Yale University and relocated to New York to complete a medical degree, psychiatric and psychoanalytic training, and studio art (sculpture) at SVA. He currently teaches at Columbia University, New York Medical College, Sichuan and Tsinghua Universities in China and ABAC University in Thailand. César Alfonso is President of the Board of Directors of Children Art Foundation, a non-profit organization that supports art education for children with special needs in the United States and Southeast Asia, and President (2010-2012) of the American Academy of Psychoanalysis and Dynamic Psychiatry.

Alfonso's work includes oil paintings, mixed media, and sculptures/assemblages. He is represented by QbaVa Gallery and his artwork is in private collections in the USA, Latin America and Southeast Asia.

Artist's Statement

Through abstraction I aim at renunciation of individualism. Resembling polysemy and dialogism in literary theory, visual abstraction allows for multiplicity of meaning and reverberating meaningfulness. My work evolved from painting to "assemblages", bricolages of diverse objects humorously connected sculpturally, taking on an added dimension of contemplation. Computers and digital cameras are de-constructed and combined with ordinary objects, creating an aesthetically curious mixture of the organic with the technological. Although digital circuitry is such an integral part of contemporary life, rarely do we wonder what is "inside" machines. After three decades of socially sanctioned indoctrination, digitalization has become mainstream and fundamental across cultural domains. By turning computers inside out we are metaphorically reminded of all that we take for granted, alluding with nostalgia to our lives prior to cyberspace, and emphasizing the intricacies of a brave new world of connectivity and social networking created by technological wizardry.

Utilizando la abstracción, mi objetivo artístico destaca la renuncia al individualismo. Si recurrimos como marco comparativo a los mecanismos literarios tales como la polisemia y el dialogismo, la abstracción visual en las artes da paso a la multiplicidad de significantes para reverberar la entereza del significado. Mi obra evolucionó de la pintura a los ensamblajes; bricolajes de una amalgama de objetos interconectados con un toque de humor escultural. Cámaras digitales y ordenadores son de-construidos y luego combinados con otros objetos ordinarios, para crear una fusión estéticamente curiosa entre lo orgánico y lo tecnológico. A pesar de que los circuitos digitales son indiscutiblemente parte integral del quehacer contemporáneo, rara vez imaginamos lo que anida dentro de estos aparatos. Tras tres décadas de doctrinarismo social, las computadoras acapararon un nuevo enfoque que trasciende fronteras culturales y políticas. En mi obra resalto su fachada interna como metáfora de todo aquello que tomamos por sentado sobre elementos indispensables para la humanidad. A la misma vez, aflora la nostalgia de aquella vida –aún vívida- sin circuitos ni ciberespacio, mientras enfatiza la complejidad de un mundo nuevo; interconectado por redes sociales engendradas por la magia de la tecnología.

César Alfonso – 2011

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