Arturo Herrera (Venezuelan, b.1959) is a visual artist who was born in Caracas, Venezuela. He received his BFA in 1982 from the University of Tulsa, OK, before graduating with an MFA from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 1992. He is known for his works that are meant to tap into the viewer's subconscious through the artist’s clever mixing of cartoon characters and abstract shapes; this technique produces half-obscured images intended to evoke memory. Much of his work is open-ended and provocative in nature, often taking innocent images such as Disney-like characters and blending them with sexual and violent themes. These dark themes contrast sharply from the images of innocence the characters represent. His work is a balance between Figurative and Abstract Art, and his inspiration is derived from the human mind and dark psychology. Herrera frequently employs different techniques such as splicing, fragmentation, and re-contextualization that make his work very provocative. His work includes paper works, sculptures, wall paintings, collages, photographs, felt wall hangings, and reliefs. Many of his wall hangings fuse together elements of dance and music. His hangings of tangled felt pinned to the wall, such as Felt #4 / Brown and Felt #12 / Red, are known for their dripped paint appearance.
In 1992, he began exhibiting Flamesart at Gallery 400 in Chicago, as well as Not Working in L.A. in Los Angeles, CA. Throughout the 1990s, Herrera had exhibitions across the world, including the Revolution Gallery in Ferndale, MI, the Randolph Street Gallery in Chicago, IL, and the Zeno X Gallery in Antwerp, Belgium. His work has been highly praised for its combination of elements and ability to evoke memory, and Herrera has been honored by many awards, such as the Deustscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst Fellowship. Recent works by Herrera include #6 BF4, High, Want, Plot , and Untitled. In recent years Herrera has had solo exhibitions around the world in galleries such as the Galeria Fortes Vilaça in São Paulo, Brazil, the Galerie Max Hetzler in Berlin, Germany, the Center for Contemporary Arts in Santa Fe, NM, the Centre d'Art Contemporain in Geneva, Switzerland, Galeria Helga de Alvear in Madrid, Spain, and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City. He has also participated in numerous group exhibitions such as Carbonic Anhydride at Galerie Max Hetzler in Berlin in 2006, and Twister at Real Art Ways in Hartford, CT, in 1997. Herrera currently lives and works in both New York City and Berlin.

Timeline

1959
Born in Caracas, Venezuela
1982
BFA University of Tulsa Tulsa, OK
1992
MFA Univeristy of Illinois Chicago, IL
Lives and works in New York

Exhibitions

2008
Adaptation: Video Installations by Ben-Ner, Herrera, Sullivan, and Sussman & The Rufus Corporation, The Smart Museum at the University of Chicago, Chicago IL, January 31 – May 4, 2008
2008
Galería Helga de Alvear, Madrid, Spain, Jan. 17-March 8, 2008 (solo)
2008
Galeria Fortes Vilaça, São Paulo, Brasil. June-July, 2008 (solo)
2007–2008
Perspectives in Latin American Art, 1930-2006: Selections from a Decade of Acquisitions. MoMA, New York, Nov. 2007-Feb. 2008
2007
Whole Fragment, Sheppard Fine Arts Gallery, University of Nevada, Reno, NV. Curated by Marjorie Vecchio
2007
In Context, Collage + Abstraction, Pavel Zoubok Gallery, NY, NY
2007
Comic-Abstraction: Image-Breaking, Image-Making, Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
2007
Thomas Dane Gallery, London, U.K. (solo)
2007
Kettle’s Yard, Arturo Herrera, Cambridge, U.K. (solo)
2007
The Aldrich Museum, Castles, Dwarfs, and Happychaps, Ridgefield CT (solo)
2007
Ikon Gallery, Arturo Herrera, Birmingham, U.K. (solo)
2007
Castles, Dwarfs, and Happychaps, The Aldrich Museum, Ridgefield CT. (solo)
2006
Galerie Max Hetzler, Berlin, Germany. (solo)
2006
Carbonic Anhydride, Galerie Max Hetzler, Berlin, Germany.
2006
Antoss Berlin, Haus Am Waldsee, Berlin, Germany.
2006
Big Juicy Paintings (And More): Highlights from the Permanent Collection, Miami Art Museum, Miami, FL
2006
Transforming Chronologies: an Atlas of Drawings, Part Two, Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
2005
Sikkema Jenkins & Co., New York, NY
2005
Centro Galego de Arte Contemporanea, Arturo Herrera, Santiago de Compostela, Spain (solo)
2002
Art Gallery of Ontario, Fragments and Figments: Works on Paper, Toronto, Canada. (solo)
2001
UCLA Hammer Museum Los Angeles, CA
2000
Redrawing the Line, Art in General New York, NY
2000
Dejá-Vu, Art Miami Miami, FL
2000
00, Barbara Gladstone Gallery New York, NY
2000
Centre d'Art Contemporain Geneva, Switzerland
2000
Artpace San Antonio, TX
1999
Zeno Gallery Antwerp, Belgium
1997
Twister, Real Art Ways Hartford, CT
1996
Gahlberg Gallery Glen Ellyn, IL
1994
MWMWM Chicago, IL
1993
Abstract Chicago, Klein Art Works Chicago, IL