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Park Place Gallery is pleased to present Happy Sad, a solo exhibition by Jonathan Torres. Torres is a Puerto Rican artist born in 1983 in San Juan who now lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. This body of paintings and drawings explores otherworldliness and his reality of living in the diaspora. 

Torres states, “Many of my paintings depict distorted faces; the figures undergo or have completed metamorphosis – they are a recognizable character, yet transformed to a new persona. With this, I reflect on my own identity as a Puerto Rican and someone who left the island, but also on living in a rough city like New York. In both places, beauty and happiness exist, but the absurdity and the anxiety are present, both personally and politically. In my works I want the viewer to be absorbed into this world intertwining anxiety and beauty.”

Torres takes inspiration from the works of established artists such as Leonardo Da Vinci, Francisco Goya and Caravaggio, transforming their subjects to create his own compositions. He also uses memories and trauma from personal experiences to comment on the collective chaotic socio-political environment.

The artist is currently a resident at Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program (NY, 2022 -23) and he has been exhibiting in solo and group shows between New York and Puerto Rico for over ten years. His work has been featured in Flash Art, Beautiful/Decay, and Art Observed, among other publications, and they belong to important collections such as the Museum of Fine Art, Boston and Museo Contemporáneo de Puerto Rico.