In Doniel Espinoza’s series, Escaleras al Sueño the artist combines great technical skill with a perfect measure of surrealist absurdity to visually tell his audience small, but beautiful, magical realist stories.
The objects in Espinoza’s paintings are, in a sense, overly familiar. We live with them daily, we interact with them casually, but those things – the city, the sofa, the cabinet, the piano, the table, the fruit – are intimately a part of our lives. They are our home, they provide us rest, they give us music, the are our family temples, they sate our hunger. Collectively, they provide space for our memory. They are the icons of our most intimate history.
As a series, Escaleras al Sueño, which means both Stairs to Sleep and Stairs to the Dream reminds the viewer to recollect moments of joy, of loss and of our place – achieved or unwanted – in this world. And it begs us to strive for something more beautiful, yet.
Espinoza’s use of profoundly dark shadows, in paintings that also employ colors central to the Guatemalan cultural palette, draws forth a double-edged question. What is the dream towards which we are aspiring? What is the reality to which we are bound?
For the viewer, such questions only add to the richness of the visual and spiritual experience.
Doniel Espinoza, born in 1970, has participated in more than 30 group shows in Guatemala, El Salvador, Ecuador, the United States and Germany. His works are currently showing at La Antigua Galería del Arte on 4 Calle Oriente No. 15, between 1st and 2nd Avenidas.