It’s easy to understand why Carlos Rolón has tender feelings for his childhood home. It was a warm, welcoming house, lovingly created by his Puerto Rican parents. Though many of us have good memories of our childhood, it would probably never occur to us to recreate our home…or that it would even be possible to recreate it. But that’s what Rolón does, and does so well.
He doesn’t create just the rooms and decor, but the feeling of being in the home of Puerto Rican immigrants, who brought their island sensibility to Chicago and created a warm, caring place for family. Rolón’s Trophy Room is a recreation of the room in the basement where he watched boxing matches with his father and Imperial Nail Salon (My Parents’ Living Room, 1976), the living room in his childhood home from which his mother ran a bootleg nail salon.
Carlos Rolón: Outside/In
Carlos Rolón’s ability to produce work that is relatable to people around the world may stem from his goal of wanting people to feel welcome at his exhibits. Rolón says that his parents knew nothing about contemporary art and doesn’t think they would have felt comfortable in a contemporary art museum. Walking into a show of Rolón’s is like walking into a room of comfort food. Bling, macrame, beads and mirrors take on a nostalgic feel.
At his current show at the New Orleans Museum of Art, Rolón has, among the macrame and artificial flowers, a sculpture called Nomadic Habitat (Hustleman), a mobile cart inspired by the street vendors of New Orleans and the Caribbean. The exhibit runs through August 26, during which time the cart will be run by local New Orleans artist collectives and community partner organizations.
Rolón also has a show called LAMYLAND at Selfridges in London, which runs through March 25th.
Carlos Rolón/Dzine at VFA
Rolón has created a series of gilded works that capture the feeling of the tropics and ornamentation of his childhood home. Done in gold leaf on linen, Allegory To Paradise Lost and Bahamian Love Vine VI (Spanish Gold) are both available at VFA. Please contact us for more information about the works of Carlos Rolón or any of the other fine work available at VFA.