Irvin Rodriguez paints and draws the human figure, successfully combining a traditional realist approach akin to Spanish Baroque on his figures with a more contemporary looseness towards abstraction on the background settings. His method and process serve as a vehicle to explore the figure, nature, art history, race, and identity.
Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, Rodriguez is a first-generation bilingual American from Dominican descent. Growing up in the inner city—a cement jungle of concrete buildings, stone facades, and fire escapes—Rodriguez recalls a bleak and oppressive sense of low expectations. Art became his escape; it gave him a sense of purpose, carried him through life and drove him to study fine art.