Name: Henry Ballate
Â· Do you make a career out of or hope to make a career out of art, or is it a sideline for you?
I can only live making art. I need it like I need to breathe and it gives me the utmost satisfaction. I was born in the midst of chaos and confusion, it was already past â€œWhite on Whiteâ€, and someone had already proclaimed that there was nothing more to paint. I was born after the second â€œurinalâ€ and that’s too much to say. I was also born with a boot on my head and a kick in the ass (Cuba 1966) but one thing was certain, I was born to paint.
Â· What is it about your work that makes it speak to people or to the community at large?
The fact that it is not politically correct and very bold plays a big part. I have given myself to art and a lot of that is reflected in my pieces.
Â· How do you let people know about your work?
I have various methods I employ. These include exhibitions, publications, and of course my personal portfolio website and online networking sites.
Â· What do you feel inspires you to make art in the particular medium you have chosen?
I find my inspiration in historical works of art and in them I can observe this very moment in which we live in. I work deliberately, employing both traditional and innovative techniques. The process starts with a collage made with the use of a computer, assembling popular images and classic works of art. Disassembling Old Master and Contemporary Artist fragments from art books and the Internet to create new works that are rooted in art history while remaining contemporary relevant.
Â· Why Miami?
Because that’s where the raft brought me and from that day, the city captivated me and inspired me. After 15 years it continues to do just that.
Â· Do you have a favorite artist from the past or present?
Caravaggio, Pollock, Bacon, Mapplethorpe and many more, but these are the ones that retain my attention in front of their works.
Â· How would you compare the art scene in Miami to other cities you have lived or worked in?
Miami is the future, while everything else is just the past.