Over the past six years, Jose Dávila has created a series of cut-out works that emerged from the pictorial language of Pablo Picasso, Roy Lichtenstein, among others, with a special emphasis on portraits and paintings depicting the human figure. The progressive dissection of elements from the photographic documentation of these earlier examples transforms the brushstrokes and the colour blocks into autonomous, three-dimensional forms. Through this process, the background, or the primary subject, become absent figures, creating compositions that exist only through the act of negation. These apophatic gestures contribute to the possibilities of Dávila’s homage and his reinterpretation of art history.
Even though the isolated brushstrokes render the composition ambiguous, they nevertheless manage to reference the original. This visual identification becomes almost automatic as a result of the familiarity viewing publics will have with some of the most iconic works of the twentieth century. The pictorial consequences of the original decisions that first took place on the canvases are replicated and transformed into physical supports for the image itself, thereby confounding the terms of representation.
Jose Dávila’s inaugural NFT, UNTITLED (FEMME D’ALGER), illustrates the thought process behind a series of cut-outs the artist had previously created: studies of the legacy of Delacroix, Picasso, and Lichtenstein through the example of the FEMME D’ALGER series. In the NFT, the process of abstraction from the referential image is expressed through animation, allowing the viewer to observe Davila’s artistic operations in motion.
The NFT will be minted on the Ethereum Blockchain, more precisely on ERC-721 Token, and can be traded on all es- tablished marketplaces, such as OpenSea, Coinbase, and LooksRare.