A plastic mix of materials, both metal and rock are the core of this well-balanced sculpture that stands without any help on Vallarta's Malecon.
This unique bronze and obsidian 7.5-foot tall sculpture is certainly one that you either love or you hate, some are surprisingly and immediately repulsed and even say it out loud... Maybe it's something related to fear of clowns (it could look a bit like one) or maybe the jagged edges make them imagine ferocious and menacing teeth.
In any case, others, like me, feel a strange attraction to the curvy metal edges, the flexible contours of the piece, the plump black abdomen, the mix of rock and metal, the iridescent obsidian surface shining in the sun, the strange details, a "clown" eating stones... what's it all about?
First off Jonás' works mostly inhabit an alternate reality, more dreamlike than down-to-earth, more scary or disturbing than your average sculpture. One thing is certain, they are never dull nor derivative; unique and with a personal style is what stands out when you admire them.
When asked, the author tells us that he feels that negative emotions are like stones which we swallow through life. So this figure is certainly very artistically going through life digesting negativity at a rapid pace.
The artist stated that his childhood also influenced the sculpture when he played with mud and had a great time. His sculpture tries to remind us of our childhood when we started to walk, balance ourselves and enjoy the different elements of the world.
Jonás Gutiérrez was born in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico in 1966. He began to sculpt in 1980, helping create the well-known sculpture "La Estampida" located prominently in Guadalajara.
In 1987 he participated in the workshop of Ignacio Fernández del Valle. He made his first signed bronze pieces in 1988, with one that he titled "Piezas Zoomorfas". In 1989 he started on wood carving, developing a unique technique for two years, this inspired him to add an organic dimension to his work.
By using the lost wax technique, Jonas Gutierrez's sculptures seem to seek balance in their composition and analyze the suffering of the human figure. Female figures became important in this stage of his work. In a later phase, he seems to amalgamate everything: organic elements, animals and the female figure.
"The Subtle Stone-Eater" was unveiled on October 14, 2006, by the then Municipal President Lic. Gustavo González Villaseñor, Council Member, Ricardo Ezequiel Uribe González, the Deputy Director of Art and Culture, Mónica Venegas and the chronicler of Puerto Vallarta, Juan Manuel Gomez Encarnación.
Made in bronze with lost wax technique, obsidian and stone is part of the materials used.
You'll find this sculpture on the corner of Leona Vicario Street and the Malecon in downtown Puerto Vallarta.
Author: M. A. Gallardo