I am originally from São Paulo, Brazil and have also lived in Lima, New York City and currently in Los Angeles. These urban environments have shaped my memory and permeate most of my work. I am partly self-taught and partly homeschooled. My father is an illustrator, and as a kid I spent many hours drawing and watching him work. He was a constant source of inspiration and encouragement, but having an artist father also proved frustrating at times. At 17, I remember comparing my work to his and thinking my drawings and paintings were not good enough. I quit. I pursued a career in advertising as an Art Director, something that still allowed me to exercise my interest in art but without requiring mastery with the pencil or brush. 20 years later, while living in New York City and being exposed to its many contrasts, my desire to pick up the brushes intensified. Now I am back to painting and this time I’m not quitting.
The subject matter of my work is waste, overconsumption and social inequality. Trash and objects found in the street are valuable, and not only for aesthetic reasons. The brands, logos and packaging depicted in my work are objects with an inherent duality, both desirable and despicable, a clear byproduct of having worked in advertising for more than 20 years.
Current and Previous Works by Alvaro Naddeo
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