Written By Olga Garcia-Mayoral
May 10, 2023 at 7:05 PM

New Morning, oil on linen, 46” x 36” / 117 x 91.5 cm, part of the exhibition “Reticence &
Transparency Des Nuages” at The House of Arts in Wynwood. Photos courtesy of Ritchard Rodriguez.

Ritchard Rodriguez is celebrating 49 years as an artist. A Puerto Rican man with a zest for life, Rodriguez says painting is his profession and way of life.

Miami artist Ritchard Rodriguez wanted to be a comic-book illustrator growing up, but by the time he graduated from New York’s prestigious High School of Art & Design in Manhattan he was an oil painter and he’s been that ever since.

Originally from New York City, Rodriguez has lived worldwide, from Colorado, Paris, Berlin, Hamburg, and Brazil; most recently, he has resided at his new home in Brickell.

”Sometimes The Silence Can Be Like Thunder”, B. Dylan, oil on linen, 44” x 62” / 111.76 x
157.48 cm., part of the exhibition “Reticence & Transparency Des Nuages” at The House of
Arts in Wynwood. Photos courtesy of Ritchard Rodriguez.

Now, with a solo exhibition at The House of Arts, displaying 24 oil paintings bridging three bodies of work, he speaks on narratives of hope and assumptions of life.

“Initially, I was a figurative painter for 15 years,” says Rodriguez. “I met Lisa de Kooning, a friend of a friend, and I had no idea who her father was. Then, while in Paris, I attended a big retrospective on de Kooning.  I’m seeing a video of de Kooning painting in his studio, and he has a tube of paint in one hand and a wall scraper in the other hand, and he is squeezing it and drawing on the canvas; with the other hand he gives the paint shape. He stunned me.”

Rodriguez continues, “Over time I started to discover a new process in creating my art; this newfound form was nourishment for expression and development as a person.”

Actions Speak Oil on linen, 60” x 40” / 152 x 101 c., part of the exhibition “Reticence &
Transparency Des Nuages” at The House of Arts in Wynwood. Photos courtesy of Ritchard Rodriguez.

In discussing how he sees his work, Rodriguez explains, “I see my paintings as living creatures with shapes, problems, and solutions that I address within a candid dialogue, stemming from pure spontaneity, entering a space of concentration, rhythm, physical gesturing, and understanding of where a work wants to go.”

The exhibition, entitled “Reticence & Transparency (Des Nuages),” explores three bodies of work from pre, during the lockdown, and post-COVID. The abstraction of primary and secondary colors, shapes, and forms in this collection of small, medium, and large-scale works were developed during a three year period.

Through his works, Rodriguez inspires the viewer to have a perspective on hope and our perceptions of reality. In addition, the unique use of color and composition invites the viewer to have a meditative experience with the paintings.

Fear of Transparency, oil on linen, 22″ x 18″ / 56 x 46 cm, part of the exhibition “Reticence
& Transparency Des Nuages” at The House of Arts in Wynwood. Photos courtesy of Ritchard Rogriguez.

In his current series entitled “Des Nuages” (meaning clouds in French), Rodriguez was awestruck by Miami’s skies, cloud formations, and thunderstorms. “My work is very gestural and spontaneous, with forms assembling these clouds of wonder into a musical composition.” Rodriguez went on to describe how painting flat on the ground give him the ability to create a balanced atmosphere, developing composed abstract formations that are subconsciously familiar to the eye.

Rodriguez’s use of color, along with the bold application of paint and manipulation of brushstrokes, evokes sentiment and belonging. In expansion, he wants to encourage the viewer to have an interpersonal connection of hope and a positive perspective.

With the discipline of painting for nearly 50 years, Rodriguez’s skill set transcends his work and personality. The exhibition is an oeuvre of his dynamic approach to sharing a common thread between the revealed and concealed. The use of color and texture creates layers of meaning and ambiguity, encouraging the viewer to question their perspective and consider how humans navigate life’s complexities.

The exhibition is a dynamic representation of emotion, energy, and technique. Rodriguez says his work is developed over decades of trial and error, exploring different ways to manipulate the materials, composition, color, and texture. He draws influence from Joan Mitchell (1925-1992), Willem de Kooning (1904-1997), and Lee Krasner (1903-1984).

“I was in awe of de Kooning’s skillful techniques and freehanded innovation,” Rodriguez said, giving him the curiosity to research and explore other expressionist and abstract masters.

Louder Than Words Oil on linen, 60” x 40” / 152 x 101 cm., part of the exhibition “Reticence
& Transparency Des Nuages” at The House of Arts in Wynwood. Photos courtesy of Ritchard Rodriguez.

As for Joan Mitchell, “I visited her retrospective at the Whitney, which presented works from the last ten years of her artistic career,” said Rodriguez. “I was blown away with just the consistency of things. You know how I mean? There was just a fluidity, use of color and variations of brushstrokes.”

“Lee Krasner has had the strongest influence over me. Her artworks have this gestural style, texture, and rhythm,” said Rodriguez. “Lee’s interest in self, nature, and organic imagery is a correlation between my work and hers.”

Rodriguez invites the viewer to contemplate the layers of meaning within the artworks; the exhibition “Reticence & Transparency (Des Nuages)” investigates the complexity of communication, honesty, and intimacy in modern-day society. Inspired by the past five years of his life, Rodriguez explores the tensions between the exposed and camouflaged mixed emotions. Using primary and secondary colors and various brush stroke textures, thus creating layers upon layers of meaning and ambiguity, the artist encourages the spectators to question their assumptions and reflect on their perceptions of reality.

WHAT: Ritchard Rodgriuez, Reticence & Transparency ( Des Nuages) Solo Exhibition
WHERE: The House of Arts (North Wynwood) 100 NW 36ht Street, Miami FL 33127
WHEN: May 6th through June 6th, 2023
HOURS: Monday-Friday 10 am-6 pm Saturday 12-6 pm
COST: Free
INFORMATION: 833-624-7753; is a nonprofit source of dance, visual arts, music and performing arts news. Sign up for our newsletter and never miss a story.

latest posts

“Miami Women” exhibition celebrates resilience and woma...

Written By Isabel Rivera,

What began as a project to document the stories of remarkable Miami women through photos and writings grew to include a network of women from 17 countries sharing their narratives, all connected by their hometown.

O Cinema Film Series Highlights Social Justice Issues, ...

Written By Gina Margillo,

O Cinema has partnered with The Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers to present a series of socially relevant, timely documentaries that prioritize Southern artists and the issues of our time.

Arts for Learning/Miami ArtWorks Paid Summer Internship...

Written By Josie Gulliksen,

Film interns of A4L Miami’s ArtWorks program produced a short film based on Shakespeare’s Macbeth, writing, directing and producing the film with guidance from an A4L Teaching Artist. Photo courtesy A4L Miami. A paid summer arts internship program is invaluable for students to gain experience prior to entering college and for 12 years Arts for Learning/Miami has been providing just