José Nuñez was born in 1945 in El Salvador and moved to California in 1996. Shortly thereafter, he began making art at Creativity Explored’s studio in San Francisco.
The flora and fauna of his beloved El Salvador occupy a large portion of his attention. The stroke used to delineate the shapes of his objects is simple, assured, and perfectly controlled. Often these subjects are repeated, or elongated, to fill the picture plane, giving his work a complex graphic arrangement. Hints and washes of color are added to punctuate and accent the strength and delicacy of his line.
Figural work also defines his practice. Faces made with a minimum of strokes sit atop extremely long, slender legs finished with bare feet in profile. These columnar figures lean and sway to coexist equally in the frame, rarely touching but very close, often separated by long-stemmed flowers tipped with color. Drawing from traditional religious sculpture and painting, Nunez recently began a series of angelic portraiture. Differentiated from his previous figures by a set of feathered wings, tiny upraised arms and a spike of laurel, Nunez’s angels ensure his place in the historical lineage of icon painters. In 2011 CB2, one of our Community Arts Partners, chose Nunez’s work to adorn a complete set of bedding.