Juan Carlos Noria / dixon
A confluence of cultures and contradictions, Juan Carlos Noria is a
painter for our times. Born in Caracas, Venezuela he carries his Latin
American sensibility on his sleeve. As a teen growing up in Ottawa,
Canada, he became an accomplished figure skater.
Grace and lines were an obsession. So, too were his ideas of subversion. He fell out of skating after hitting the rigid class structure of the sport, finding comfort (and discomfort) in visual art, on the streets with a paint can, postering, skateboarding, fleeing police. A strange opportunity then came. A world tour with Disney on Ice. It heightened his sense of absurdity, humour and anger, sharpened his visual and social awareness. Arriving back in Ottawa, he hung up the skates and his career took flight with live painting performances. So proficient from his days of graffiti, he quickly earned a reputation for highly resolved canvases produced in front of appreciative crowds.
Through these events in various venues, Juan Carlos also ensured a showcase for other young Ottawa artists, raising the bar and pushing them to achieve with him.Â It was 2001-2002.
Meanwhile, the tide of CNNesque culture rose in North America. Juan,
always with an eye on pop culture and current events, found himself
painting with increasing anger. He needed to change the channel. In
November 2004, he moved to Barcelona, Spain to find tranquilo, a new view of the world and new audiences. Since his move, he has evolved, focused and become more prolific, with exhibits in Spain, the United States and Canada. True to subversive nature, he undercuts his own personality allowing himself to explore two other personas and visual styles. He sometimes works under the pseudonyms of royal or dixon. He has been infuenced by his contemporaries Mark Marsters, Pat Thompson and Dave Cooper. Yet, he is himself-singular Juan. He is without pretense, full of concern for others, quick to laugh and quicker to paint something ripe.