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Matter and Dramatic Action

The human figure is one of the great art themes, maybe the biggest, and I'm tempted to say that even in landscapes or still life, we can notice its absence as emptiness or consider that everything contained in this space is referred to it. What interests is, then, and this must contribute to identify the work of a creator, to see how this presence is seen and interpreted.

To this invites us Jose Luis Navarro, in especially particular conducive circumstances, because the exhibition of his work is retrospective.

The way in which are developed his own vision of the human figure and other elements of his paintings will show his evolution, his plastic ripeness and, in a correlative form, his worldview.

In order to paint the world, the first thing is breaking it down. In this, there is so much of denial as of affirmation. Navarro breaks down in a way and other the real forms: men and women, and also animals, especially birds, and some trains. Except for certain stage marked by surrealism, all the human figures show opened arms and legs, as if to fly, and the remaining forms length or wide. This image decomposition is accompanied by dynamism. Another exception: the static female figure, the eagle, the horse's head and the apple hanging flanked by two faucets, it all on a black uniform background which seems to be stopped out from space and time.

There is here a mixture of drama and humor, two poles in order to establish a fair and maybe necessary balance. It´s clear that the artist takes the world seriously, but as a creator, is also critical. José Luis Navarro sees the world in its permanent tear, and Frances Miralles has said rightly that here "from the reflection of life sense" we are given a death outburst, the ultimate sense of our journey on this world.

But to paint it he puts on the humor eyeglasses, which relativize everything. And behind humor is, as often happens, love. Clearly he feels tenderness for his characters, and up to a point he identifies with them. We can say his art has an expressionist character- at the end all the contemporary art has it- and is therefore gesture, something which also is, overall, contemporary art.

The way this takes place in Navarro's work is very personal. In it we can find in plus the thread that binds the different paths manifested in his painting and drawing, the decomposition of the world and that sort of cry of his creatures. Later, what was a drawing, a few figures caught in action, has become painting. If we once saw cut-out shapes and which mattered was especially their silhouettes and the circumstances they were in, now everything is inside. The figures, the forms, have been opened, and it is not that the picture has gone, it has been camouflaged.

What matters now to us is painting. A thick impasto painting which is very rich in tone, with a limited voluntarily range. Dominate the grays, blues, and ochre, with black marking the ends and holding and giving the ultimate meaning to everything. But if we look closely we will check that there is also a more precise delimitation of the figure, demarcating what is on the inside and what involves. But it would be said that everything is the same magma, the same sea, the same substance. Something like a wave, the world´s one, beat the limits of the figure. The matter which fills, in thick layers, the paintings of his last period is worked with plastic wisdom. It is not left out the reference to the world we call real, but we still find recognizable figures, especially human, his main theme and the great theme of art.Seen on the whole, this exhibition of José Luis Navarro allows us to appreciate the coherence whereupon his work has been developed, with the evidence that it has answered, all the time, to an inner needing. And we also check that the followed way has been the one of the progressive and full realization of his creative abilities.

José Corredor Mateos

Historian and Art Critic.
Art Shows Advisor for great prestige organizations in Barcelona Gaudí building “La Pedrera” and also for international artists in other international prestige centers.

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At least as for José Luis Navarro (Granollers, 1960) we again become to find that situation in which only enters the world of art that who has a natural disposition and a visceral need, causing an inflection to some contemporary trends which made that at the world of art were coming nothing but “concept” people without any special skills.

José Luis Navarro is a plastic gifted as well as for …………as for representation. A good day he saw some "Tapies materia" and perceives they have an aesthetic sensibility, and another day is himself who feels able to reproduce with the appropriate tools anything surrounding. But he is also aware of the sensitivity being guided by a certain concept which orders and builds her.

In a short time he comes across almost all the possibilities of contemporary art from reproduction to expression, whenever a concept exists or an intention to be guided by. In meaning, from the ability to reproduce immediately comes into surrealism, the intention is that which has taken place, from the schematic of reproduction to cartoonish expressionism which places clear the veil that hides the authenticity of the facts. He skips to expressionism, pure and simple.

His hand and his painting concept are quick to build and to determine the proportions, not too many academic resources are needed, because his sensitivity and his executive have trained him in the ways of contemporary masters. It´s true that with joy and spirit, he wants to know how all this is learned, but still is even truer the lesson was understood and assimilated by far. One line and some colors build and contour, the turpentine and its squirts sizing and deeping, intention distorts and expresses. From men goes to cities. Everything is becoming more expressive when is diluted the objective reference.

But surfaces sharpened by turpentine give way to the thick areas of the matter. Now is not painting but matter which wants to express itself. The artist believes perhaps it will be the "myth" which will explain from now on the content of his paintings. Raised the issue thus, setting aside yet surreal symbols and formal expressiveness, in the matter combat the artist is fighting , the work is located between the possibilities of a Tapies or a Barceló.

The new purpose is expectant or the matter expression or the expression by the matter. The choice and solution belong to José Luis Navarro.

Arnau Puig

Art critic and essayist

Theoretical art group Dau al Set.

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There is a nuanced duality in Jose Luis Navarro´s work. On one hand, a life explosion: dancers dancing in the sand of the beach, banks of fish crossing the sea floor, dragonflies dancing on unnamed flowers, immerse us into a sensual world, where the sea and the sun deduce the senses. On the other hand, the reflection on the person: from the human body, from the man who feels threatened status, from the reflection of the absence sense, a death outburst is offered to us, the last sense of our journey on this earth.

José Luis Navarro, with this duality appears to us as an artist deeply Mediterranean. With a loving technical language outlining little by little, he is sensitive to the major themes which have shaped through the time, the Mediterranean art; the sensual meaning of life and the reflection about destiny. We are in front of an artist which moves away from strict stylists approaches and returns to the path of thought. This is the search for the delight of senses, without forgetting the anguish of the human condition.


Francesc Miralles

Art Critic

Barcelona´s Escola Massana Headmaster from 1980 to 1985

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It's not very often that a gallery owner write a presentation for an artist who is attached to his gallery. What can be said against him? Everything I say about his work can seem interested blurb.

The fact is he has honored me asking for a few words for this special exhibition and neither for its value as an artist nor by the sincere friendship that join us I can refuse.

José Luis Navarro with his honest work, well done, without concessions, has been rising day by day steps in the art world.

His dissent, a goal which cannot be put aside by any artist, has led him to create history.

Today his creations are appreciated far beyond our environment, and that's important.

There has been more than six years that we have his works in our gallery. We have followed his progress step by step, we are conscious of his effort and we cannot stop encouraging him. We believe in him and in his work.

Go José Luis.

Antonio Botey

AB Art Gallery Director (Granollers - Barcelona - Spain)

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Human life entails a need for living than artists turn in a chromatic witness dialogue, ironic, laudatory and often report. This is the case of Jose Luis Navarro, who through his incisive, and somewhat aggressive painting, connect with the social environment, which creates the human being. The drawing and the color transparent with their shapes and hues, experiences through the language of the human figure, distorted as proper, according to a studied and codified criteria.

Without fear to be mistaken, we can say that the current painting of José Luis Navarro defends a social philosophy of relationship between man and his environment. The human body has never played such an outstanding star role, but this leadership role obeys to specific interests which are directing the orchestra from a concealed discretion.

José Luis Navarro, with a chromaticism pear to the earth´s and dehumanized consciously draws, presents a picture of deep human feelings. The manipulation of the body comes into artistic language in defense of human coexistence

Joan Sala i Vila

Art Gallery Advisory BM Granollers. (Barcelona)

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Frontera es orilla de su propio misterio

Francisco Basallote.

LA BÚSQUEDA DE LA BELLEZA contrae la certidumbre de lo que siendo inalcanzable posibilita el goce efímero que brinda. En ese abundamiento la armonía que ejerce sobre el espectador procura un espacio de justicia: el mundo se nos presenta inédito, génesis del alumbramiento de la mirada remozada que obra sobre aquél –el espectador- desde dentro. Es decir, un proceso de construcción interior y permanente introspección. El arte conjuga ambas sensibilidades para aposentar su espíritu en la del ser humano. En el que transfigura y transfiere su patrimonio intangible.

La realidad inteligible que el filósofo griego Platón definía como Idea se vincula intrínsecamente con la expresión inmaterial del arte. La trascendencia estriba en la disposición de transformar la realidad sensible –cosas- y su naturaleza material, en la revelación que somos: la creyente afirmación en la exploración incesante. El arte es luminaria que se empuña con la vana pretensión de vislumbrar más allá de misterio que nos envuelve.

PRECIPITACIÓN HACIA LO ESENCIAL e insondable, ese es el verdadero fin que persigue el artista. Explorar la sima de lo connatural y efímero que subyace en el yo. La huella dactilar es única: la fragilidad. El arte aspira a recordarnos que nuestro paso transita por la senda que otros hollaron. La conexión es universal y abarca tanto a quienes nos precedieron como antecedimos.

El pintor ruso Vasili Kandinsky afirmaba que “El arte va más allá de su tiempo y lleva parte del futuro”. Ese valor de nuevo augurio lo fue antes de asentimiento con el tiempo pasado. Las pinturas rupestres, a modo de ritual al abrigo de las cuevas o el primer grito de dolor y desgarro por la pérdida de un semejante, se prestaron a indicarnos que el lenguaje no es tan solo un medio de expresión. Es una necesidad de erigirnos en protagonistas del espacio que moramos. El lenguaje nos dota de conciencia. De esa “resonancia interior”, a la que recurría el autor de Sobre lo espiritual en el arte para explicar el efecto que provoca y que la convierte en una manifestación del alma.

JOSÉ LUIS NAVARRO TRAZA EL PERFIL DE LA AUSENCIA. De ello es consciente quien contempla su obra pictórica que trasmina con poderosa sinestesia. El desprendimiento se transluce como signo distintivo y premeditado de solaz abstracción: la línea emboscada, aparentemente ingenua, es arquitectura de lo arcano; la simbología atávica del cuerpo humano concebido sin rasgos, sin memoria, parece clamar piedad para el mundo; el instante conmovido no se detiene en la linde del lienzo y es merecedor de la reflexión a la que dispone su encuadre; la ironía contextualizada en la estética personal y depurada del autor nos exhorta a considerar lo menudo que somos; la sensación de serena nostalgia acompasa el sentir que traspasa la mera observación, convirtiéndose en meditación El pintor granollerense acumula tal dosis de heterogeneidad en la práctica artística que, de forma y manera redescubridora, su evolución gravita en el tiempo. La indagación es basamento vertebral en su quehacer creativo. Aglutinando y componiendo una miscelánea rica en propuestas transversales, gracias a su capacidad y maestría en ensamblar una amplia gama de procedimientos pictóricos. A lo que incorpora el espíritu lírico, incidiendo en el trasunto que definiera Rembrandt, “El pintor persigue la línea y el color, pero su fin es la poesía”. La pintura es celosía para la imaginación de otros horizontes que nos recatan del hastío y embargan de inquietud. Una inquietud vital y esperanzadora.

EL CIELO BENEFACTOR SE ANUNCIA en cada nueva obra de José Luis Navarro. Y ese lugar no es privativo ni privilegiado. Nos pertenece. Su textura aviva en la mirada de quien la contempla, el deseo de habitarla.


Pedro Luis Ibáñez Lérida


Poeta, articulista, crítico y comentarista literario. Miembro del Consejo de redacción de la Revista de Literatura Nueva Grecia Entre sus libros de poesía se encuentran Retazos – I Premio Plumier de Versos-, Ed. Nuño 2.005, Sevilla. Con voz propia Ed. Nuño 2.007, Sevilla. Recibió eI I Premio del III Certamen Creadores por la paz y la libertad en la modalidad de Poesía por su obra Desde la raíz de hondura secreta. De reciente publicación El milagro y la herida Ed. Voces de Tinta 2.009, Sevilla Forma parte de la Antología Poetas en Bicicleta, Homenaje a la Bicicleta a través de la Poesía, Ed. Nuño 2007 y Antología El Aljarafe y el vino, Ed. Aconcagua 2008, La caricia del agua, Emasesa, 2009, con Edición y Prólogo de Francisco Vélez Nieto; Poéticos maullidos. Antología Felina, Ed. Los Libros de Umsaloua 2.009., Homenaje a la Velada en honor a Juan Ramón Jiménez, celebrada en el Ateneo de Sevilla en marzo de 1912, Ateneo de Sevilla, 2.009; Para Miguel centenario del poeta Miguel Hernández, Atrapasueños Editorial 2010; Antología Chilango Andaluz, Ultramarina Cartonera 2011; Antología El vino en la poesía. Selección y prólogo de Francisco Vélez Nieto, Guadalturia Ediciones, 2011; La poesía es un arma cargada de Celaya. Centenario de Gabriel Celaya 1911-2011, Ed. Atrapasueños.


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