Miami has long been a complex, tangled landscape which continues to intrigue and beguile over four generations of visual artists. For Ernesto Kunde, transforming the mangroves, wild birds, and crackled Deco architecture into a physically viable format is a simple process. He displays a keen eye for interpreting his tropical surroundings maintaining a colloquial tone: the vital elements of Miami as a natural and urban biosphere are omnipresent for Kunde, appearing on cuts of canvas, found wood and corrugated aluminum. He infuses his work with a Pop Art sensibility, choosing highly saturated, contrasting tones with completely opaque shadow. Color gradients and differentials are just barely visible beneath intense layers of paint; the world may not be rendered in such stark appearances, but Kunde remains impressionable as each moment is firmly imprinted onto his mediums. Traces of Warhol, Prince, Ruscha and more contemporary practitioners such as Fiona Rae and Banksy populate the body of work. In a consistent state of experimentation and exploration, Kunde’s own practice is developing under the watchful eyes of the Miami he knows….and doesn’t know.
Maria Theresa Barbist and Elysa D. Batista are both locally based South Florida artists that collaborate as the BABA COLLECTIVE. They originally met at the Bakehouse Art Complex in Wynwood, FL during their individual artist residencies in 2016.
The idea of the BABA COLLECTIVE was born when in discussion of the diversity of artists that were found at the BAC, and other institutions in Miami, they realized the lack of archives providing the ability to access interviews of these individuals. Thus RCS: ROCKING CHAIRS SESSIONS was created. A publicly accessible forum where one could find individual recordings describing the professions, media, and life of South Florida based creatives.
Launching their collaborative endeavor in 2017, the BABA COLLECTIVE seeks to amass a window into the lives and process of SoFla based professionals in the arts.