Some people can create work in-between two styles as a hybrid, yet not quite belong to either. Others, like Belin, manage to combine styles that work as well as a hybrid as they do being a unique take on the individual styles involved.
It's a lofty comparison to make, but Belin is something of a modern day Picasso. He eschews certain rules of form to create something that feels right for him. Usually, if it feels right for the artist - it feels right for us too. His work ranges from sculpture to canvas, but it is on the street that he manages to stand out. Street art is continually evolving, leaving some styles behind and more actively embracing new ones. Belin is creating something fresh. He's being noticed and for good reason.
It's not often you walk past a wall daubed with the realism that he brings. Even rarer yet when that realism comes as part of his fragmented cubism. His deconstruction of form gives way to new ones. Their shapeless and boundless vicinity integrates well with the urban environment. Faces and eyes peer out from the pieces, snapshots of contemporary people in modern society.
By embracing cubism with his already well-known realist portraits, and reinterpreting this for modern sensibilities, the style that he deems postneocubismo seems personal and reflective. Often portraying loved ones, friends and family members - Belin focusses on their most profound features. The eyes, nose, ears and mouth are rearranged with splashes of bright colours to draw our eyes to where he wants them. These poetic odes to the life of those dearest to him transport passersby into his his world. Their wrinkles, dewy eyes and ecstatic expressions become moments that we are able to share with them.
With incredible technique, Belin often emphasises the eyes. They're at once looking forward with trepidation as they are looking to the side with anxious glances. You're being put in a moment, a snapshot of a powerful feeling that would overwhelm if it weren't for the integration of the more blocky cubist colourways.
Belin, whose real name is Miguel Ángel Belinchón embraces his Spanish stock in the colours he chooses. Always perfectly emotional, the intense red hues add to the seductive eyes of a female character or similarly a cool blue tells us the part of the story that the eyes leave off at. Often paintings are left ambiguous, that's where there power lies. But combining a face, something that gives away a lot, yet not everything, with his choice of colours, we become fully submerged in their thoughts. Where the ambiguity lies is not in what they're feeling, but in what made them feel that way.
Cubism was a way for artists to treat their subjects from various perspectives. In that sense it was innately analytical and somewhat psychological. The narrative elements of Belin's pieces are certainly deeply psychologically imbued. There's something Freudian about the portraits as if he himself was painting the subject as they sat by his side on a chair, discussing their innermost thoughts.
It's all here, the body and the brain, the skin and the soul. They're pointing in one direction - loneliness, sex, love, jealousy. But how they came to feel this way is up to us. That's a great deal of power to give your audience, but in an era of spoon-fed feelings, it's a greatly appreciated gesture of trust.
Our brains work fast. Very fast. We instantaneously fill in the blanks without really giving it a conscious thought. It's when we start to give something the time that we succumb to overthinking and overcomplicating matters. The two-fold impact of Belin's work capitalises on the mechanisms of our mind. Instantaneously, you're story and mines as to why a character looks jealous might differ, but upon some thought - we'll probably find common ground.
This will happen because inevitably people impose their own thoughts and feelings onto something, rather akin to a Rorschach test. Belin always had a unique ability to make things look incredibly realistic on a wall. But it's by taking a step away from this and combining it with cubist elements of deconstruction, that we are able to fully understand the depths of his artistic talents. He's since portrayed other artists like Frida Kahlo and Salvador Dali, even other artworks like Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa. That must have taken some thought, some soul-searching and research. It's something to be grateful for. He's given us the gift of perspective, the same one that cubism gave him.
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