Portrait of an Artist: Richard Henriquez
Richard Henriquez, founding partner of the internationally recognized firm Henriquez Partners Architects, is putting his artistic side on display with a new exhibit. For Narrative Fragments, Henriquez has assembled dozens of his sculptural and computer-generated works. The show runs at Winsor Gallery [3025 Granville Street, Vancouver] June 7-30.
The Straight reached Henriquez by phone to talk about the exhibit.
What is the main idea behind Narrative Fragments?
There’s a single theme in that they’re all collages of one kind or another. Even the sculptures are collages of found objects. And each object or image…has its origin, has a history, a story, and so on. It’s my belief that fragmentation is our destiny and, to understand what has become an even more fragmented world, we need to try to integrate them, these fragments, into some understandable whole that one can perceive with our body and our senses. Putting together these pieces, I think, is just a way of trying to integrate the fragmentation that we have in our lives.
How does your approach to art differ from your approach to architecture?
I don’t separate the two, really. I think they’re actually almost one and the same thing. A lot of the buildings I do are collages too. They have narratives attached to them.
How did you start using computers in your art?
We use it extensively in our [architectural] practice. The 3-D modelling software is what we use for describing buildings. And so I’ve been using some of these programs for the last ten years. It’s not something artists generally use but it’s something that I’d like to explore further in the future. You can take any 2-D image and create a 3-D image of it and then sort of fly into the 3-D image and have an exploration of it. It’s like going on a tour of a new place because of the power of this software.
You also use wooden tripods in your art. What interests you about them?
The three-point structure is the simplest stable structure that you can find. You see, these things were used to lift stone blocks, probably to build the pyramids. Certainly in Roman times they had tripods with a pulley that lifted. So as an architect I studied four years of engineering. I appreciate the simplicity of them. But as well they have…an appearance to them that I enjoy; the machined connections, the wood, just the material…. Replacing that very kind of technological instrument for a more intuitive creation is sort of a reversion. You know, the right side of the brain, the left side of the brain. I think this inversion is kind of interesting. And it makes a nice stand for a sculpture.
Portrait of An Artist is a regular feature on Straight.com that profiles local visual artists. Suggest an artist to profile in the comments section below or by sending a message via Twitter to twitter.com/thomsonreporter.