Music is vibration, art is vibration, life is vibration and in Cuban Feliz Diaz (Jotaf) all these things coincide and collide.
Born in Cuba, where the Caribbean colours blend with musical rhythms, where art is an everyday experience, means artists are of an unusual type. So it happened to Felix Diaz (Jorge Felix Diaz Urquiza) who combined a classical education with a non-classical daily experience.
Felix, how have you reconciled classical university studies with art?
I think there is something in the influence of my mother who was a teacher, maybe I wanted to teach myself and thus why I chose Art Pedagogy. I wanted to let others know about the stories of the great artists and convey their emotions.
But then it is also a fact that from the age of two years I lived with my grandfather who made musical instruments and played in his band. I played with coloured pencils while he was playing with notes. In my life I wanted to follow the teachings of both.
And meanwhile thou didst make thy works …
Not yet. While I was at the University I became the president of a major artistic association, the “Hermano Saiz”, of Santa Clara. In that role I took care of the Gallery and the promotion of concerts of authors, book exhibitions, and I was in radio promotion.
It came naturally to take courses in management of culture and organization of shows: I approached the theater. You must know that, at that time in Santa Clara, contemporary art was very lively and we welcomed artists from various parts of Latin America.
We were selling a lot of art in America and Canada and traveling constantly. Then they changed the laws and we could not move even for cultural reasons. This is why I left Cuba and fate brought me to Italy.
That’s where the ability to use many artistic languages became useful, which do you prefer?
I can change from figurative to non-figurative art: it depends on the feelings that cause me certain sounds in me, the music itself, the field recordings, or pictures.
It is important to define the style that the painter uses, through the strategy and the colours, not only the use of images. I prefer more pictorial art.
For me art should aim to improve the human being. The artist must combine ‘man-woman’ to express the maximum!
About the Interviewed:Felix Diaz
Painter and performer born in Cuba and now resident in Savona, the Caribbean of the Mediterranean.