Jean-Pierre's work explores satyric, and sometimes macabre, social compositions that underlie self-concept, intimacy, and sensual experiences. Representing intermingling carnivalesque figures, his paintings direct an incisive but empathetic gaze towards the self-conscious performativity of being, expressing striking rhythms and improvisational techniques that manifest as acts of deviation. In his play, the human body becomes a stage: sensuous, lyrical lines and dense figures of luminous color act as linguistic elements, each directing its own physical weight and affect on the bodily subjects. More closely his work examines the intersection between architecture and figurative painting with an aim to dismantle assumptions of our fixed subjectivity through images that challenge the viewer to contend with the disorganized body in a state of excess.
His painting incorporates an eclectic variety of techniques and mediums into the work- graphite, spray paint, screen-print, oil pastels, acrylic, and oil- in a tenacious commitment to make art that teems with energy, extreme movement, and feeling. Jean-Pierre’s inventive approach encompasses murals, paintings, sculptures, photography, works on paper, as well as collaborative projects and videos. Composed with a loose attitude to the physical qualities of his chosen medium, dynamic interacting arrangements of form and color fuse his passion for architectural imaginaries with the poetry of chance encounters. Sailing arm and body fluidly across the surface, he records a desire to be taken by surprise and arrive at a kind of image that would otherwise not be predictable.
Jean-Pierre Villafañe (b. 1992, Puerto Rico) received his MA in Architecture at Columbia University in New York in 2019. He received his BFA with advanced standing from SCAD, completing his last year in Hong Kong, focusing on the implications of urban conditions for social mobilization. His interest in architecture encompass-es design as resilient infrastructure through continued international studies in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, the Republic of Maldives and UAE. In 2017, he collaborated with Tatiana Bilbao’s office on the architectural installa-tion (Not) Another Tower; for the Chicago Biennial in the Chicago Cultural Center. In 2016, he volunteered as an artist to help define a visual identity for a Syrian Refugee Camp in Ritsona, Greece. Every year, he contributes work designated to collect funds for the education of youth in Kasai, Congo, in Africa. His work has been exhibited at EMBAJADA, San Juan, PR (2021); The Shanghai Art Fair, Shanghai, CN (2020); Batofar, Paris, FR (2018); The Living Gallery, Manhattan, NY (2018); Ritsona Refugee Camp, GR (2017); The Chicago Biennial, IL (2017) and Gensler, Washington, DC (2017), among others.
He currently lives and works in New York City as an artist and architect.