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Artist Spotlight Series: Fernando Suarez Reguera

Explore Fernando Suarez Reguera's visionary sculptures—masterful blends of iron, bronze, and resin, capturing dynamic movement and neorepresentational artistry.

Fernando Suarez Reguera Portrait
Fernando Suarez Reguera Portrait

Fernando Suarez Reguera emerges as a profoundly versatile sculptor, navigating a diverse artistic landscape with unwavering creativity and a meticulous approach to craftsmanship. His journey is marked by a mastery of materials—iron and bronze being his preferred mediums—yet it is his innovative use of materials like resin and mirrors that adds an unexpected dimension to his repertoire. Suarez's sculptures defy convention, exploring spatial dynamics with a keen eye for movement and weightlessness, creating pieces that seem to capture the essence of motion frozen in time.

Sculpture entitled Labyrinth by Fernando Suarez
Labyrinth Corten steel and iron. 142 x 122 x 206 cm.

Central to Suarez's artistic vision is an intense exploration of the human form, particularly the muscular physique pushed to its limits in dynamic poses. These figures, often portrayed in acts of physical prowess—leaping, climbing, running, or maintaining balance—reveal his deep psychological insight and skill in capturing fleeting moments of action with precision.

Critically acclaimed for his ability to interpret objects with intelligence and visceral impact, Suarez's work reflects a refined constructive technique that transcends traditional realism. Drawing from a firm academic foundation, his sculptures evolve into a neo-representational expressionism, where each piece offers a disintegrating view of its subject, emphasizing structural solidity amidst a backdrop of movement and dynamism.

Aldeas Simétricas. Fernando Suarez. Corten steel and iron.  175 x 38 x 75 cm.
Aldeas Simétricas Corten steel and iron. 175 x 38 x 75 cm.

María Luisa Alonso, in her review "Symphonies in A Major," paints Suarez's sculptures as elaborate theatrical stages teeming with life. Imaginative and dramatic, his works feature a diverse cast of characters—from acrobats and athletes to warriors and astronauts—set against a backdrop that includes crashed cars, helicopters, and artifacts from distant shores. This fantastical scenery, adorned with oriental huts, industrial-era ships, and floating cities, resonates with a futuristic allure, evoking a realm where magic and reality converge.

Dentro Fuera.                                                                                                                        Fernando Suarez. Bronze and iron 34 x 30 x 27 cm.
Dentro Fuera Bronze and iron. 34 x 30 x 27 cm.

The interaction of iron, bronze, and various resins in Suarez's sculptures not only showcases his technical prowess but also underscores his contribution to contemporary sculptural processes. His works challenge viewers to contemplate, understand, and engage deeply with the themes of transformation, innovation, and the human spirit that pervade his art.

Through his intricate and thought-provoking sculptures, Fernando Suarez invites us into a world where imagination knows no bounds. Each piece is a testament to his ability to blend creativity with craftsmanship, leaving an indelible impression on those who encounter his visionary creations. As spectators, we are called to complete the narrative woven into each sculpture, to appreciate the passion and ingenuity that define Suarez's distinctive artistic voice.

Sculpture entitled Organic Bridge by Fernando Suarez
Organic Bridge Corten steel and iron. 320 x 65 x 130 cm.

812 Maplewood in conversation with Fernando Suarez Reguera

Fernando Suarez Reguera in Studio
Fernando Suarez Reguera in Studio

Can you describe your creative process, from the initial concept to the finished piece? Walk us through the stages of your artistic process. 

In every journey a moment of action creates an uncertainty before the events that are to come, just as in the process of realization of a creative work, a creator is surrounded by a permanent uncertainty. During this period of time, the artist must answer and face different questions and issues that frequently come up during the creative process. You have a clear idea of the creative work but not of its complete form. For this reason, the search for formal solutions is constant and requires an enormous mental and cognitive effort. This uncertainty of the mind is what stimulates the author to develop as an artist and also motivates him to take on new projects It is dangerous to fall into monotony and conformism, either by the exhaustion of ideas or, even if it seems contradictory, by the rewards of success. You must always ask new questions that lead you to doubt and cause you to think anew without considering what has already been done. The creative process is by no means linear, there are many failures. Mistakes that lead to corrections and changes in the way you work in order to continue to grow in your personal career. As stated by Alfredo Muñoz, a social psychologist at the Universidad of Complutense in Madrid: 'You should not lose the ability to have fun'

Can you share your journey as an artist and what initially drew you to sculpture? What early experiences or influences sparked your interest in sculpture, and how have these evolved over time?

Sculpture Entitled Silverback II by Fernando Suarez
Silverback II Corten steel and iron. 130 x 80 x 154 cm.

From an early age I was clear about my love for art. I have always loved drawing and working with my hands. I didn't like to copy, I preferred that the characters and animals emerge from my head. From a very young age I spent a lot of time in the studio of my grandfather, who was a landscape painter. While he worked on his paintings I was at his side watching him attentively and fascinated by how the shapes and colors were emerging on those blank canvases. It seemed magical to me.

When I finished my high school studies and entered the University to study Fine Arts, my main idea was to paint but in the first year of the course - when you worked with all the specialties -[but instead] I fell in love with sculpture.

What challenges do you face as a sculptor, and how do you overcome them? How do you navigate issues related to material limitations, scale, and public reception? What strategies do you use to push through creative blocks or logistical hurdles?

This profession is a constant challenge, I like to continually challenge myself in my work. I don't want to settle into what I already know or master, you always have to take new paths that allow you to grow as an artist. That makes you arrive at the studio every day with the hope of discovering new things. In fact, in my creative dynamic, I usually work [on] several [sculptures] at the same time, which gives me a continuous work rhythm and maximum creative attention.

I have a great variety of themes that allows me not to pigeonhole myself and give freshness to my sculptures. It is evident that not every day you have the same inspiration but, since sculpture involves a lot of elaboration process, the lowest days creatively speaking, I dedicate to doing more mechanical work such as molds, supports, structures, etc. As Picasso said; “When inspiration comes, may it find me working.”

Since sculptors work in three dimensions, we always have constant thought about all the external and logistical factors that surround the creation of a work. How it will be transported and what machinery will be needed, the resistance of the materials if it is going to be placed outside, the creation of specific structures and supports for that work, etc. It is important to be surrounded by a good team of professionals and decisive people who can face any problem that may arise in the transfer or assembly of a work in its final location. In large-scale works, it is essential to make a prior visit to the place where the work will be located and see what foundation it needs and what personnel, vehicles and machines are necessary for its assembly.

How do you decide which materials to use for each piece? What factors influence your decisions, such as the intended effect, the theme of the work, or the physical properties of the materials? 

Sculpture entitled Anillas II by Fernando Suarez
Anillas II Bronze and iron. 50 x 30 x 180 cm.

The predominant materials in my work are metals. I work mainly with bronze, corten steel and iron, combining them with many others such as stone, wood, resin, mirrors, plastic, waxes. In other cases I give them chrome, nickel or silver baths.

A very important factor in choosing materials when creating a sculpture is its final destination. If it is outdoors, they have to be materials that hold up well to the elements, such as bronze and Corten steel. I love coming across my works again over the years and observing how climatology has interacted with them, enriching them with nuances and new textures.

And of course, another important factor in choosing materials is what you want to convey in the work: lightness, solidity, strength, fragility, energy, calm, tension, etc. In this case, the final patinas and colors of each work are also important.

Can you elaborate on the inspiration behind your fusion of human and mechanical elements within your sculptures? What attracts you to the intersection of humanity and machinery, and how do you explore this relationship through your art? How do these hybrid forms reflect your views on technology and the human experience?

When I began to create my own language, I observed the great force that works transmitted with than fusion of organic and mechanical. Since the 19th century the relationship between man and machine has been of relevant importance. Thanks to them, humanity has grown and developed enormously in recent times. But the dark side of all this has also been seen with an already irreversible Climate Change, which is causing serious consequences for nature and life. An enormous danger is also beginning to be seen in Artificial Intelligence, where it can be seen that the machine can become independent of its creator and act on its own. We see that authors like Isaac Asimov and films like Blade Runner are more current than ever.

Also as an artist and person who is attentive to current events, I see with sadness and regret the problems of emigration, wars, borders, famine, etc. For that reason, in many of my works I like to reflect all these issues that affect us all. But also in many of them I work with a more constructive message, to transmit positive energy and optimism to the viewer.

I'm especially taken with your Villages pieces. Can you delve into the inspiration and concept behind this series? What themes or narratives do you explore through these works, and what do you hope your audience takes away from these works? 

I started working with this series following an exhibition I had at the Museum of Contemporary Art in the city of Chang Won in South Korea, in 2001. After that trip I

returned to Spain full of ideas about this new line of work I wanted to start. In my Villages, I want to take the viewer to past times where man and nature were in harmony, to cities lost and frozen in time. Constructions that survived today's technological tsunami and voracious development.

Sculpture entitled Aldeas Sinuosas by Fernando Suarez
Aldeas Sinuosas Corten steel and iron. 205 x 98 x 91 cm.

Looking ahead, are there any new themes or materials you are excited to explore in your future works? Are there particular themes or concepts you are eager to investigate further? 

Now I am thinking about a couple of new paths that I want to open in my artistic career, without abandoning any of the ones I have already taken. Vestiges and Extinction will be the titles of the series that I will begin working on in the coming years. I also want to work with human beings, but not as an individual entity but as a piece or cog within a more complex social whole.

Lastly, what projects or exhibitions do you have planned for your artistic calendar in 2024?

I currently have in the gardens of the Ricardo Severo Palace, in Porto (Portugal), the individual exhibition Intemperie, of large-form art works, curated by the Perspective Art Gallery of Paris. After the summer I will have two simultaneous individual exhibitions in two Spanish art galleries. Gabriel Vanrell from Palma de Mallorca and Luisa Pita from Santiago de Compostela.


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