Artist Statement

I was born in Havana, Cuba in 1969. Due to the Cuban government’s equalitarian policy, families were only allowed to buy three toys per child a year. They were not great toys and broke quickly. My first drawings were made on my father’s discarded blueprint paper. As any child who creates intricate stories using his toys as props to understand the world, I had to draw my props to tell the same stories. I still do.  There was nothing genetical about it, not much talent either. I was just a quiet boy trying to figure it all out. Scarcity guided my curiosity and need to understand the world around me and to summarize my findings into line and color.

I still draw and paint stories. I get absorbed by the complexity of the world around me. The way that people interact with each other and their surroundings never stops fascinating me. Constantly, I try to find meaning in the random results of a simple action or a misunderstood word that should’ve, could’ve, would’ve but never reached its intended mark.

 All daily thoughts and images mix together in my head when I am absentminded washing dishes at the end of the day. There is no grandiose moment of inspiration, there is no music or bright light, there are no divine whispers in my ears. There is only dish soap, mundane repetitive movements and the need to take out the kaleidoscope in my head and share it with another human being to find common ground or to avoid insanity.  

Kaleidoscope is on display in the Stephanie Tubbs Jones Gallery from September 15 - October 31, 2017.

Artist Details

Augusto C. Bordelois

Augusto C. Bordelois (Havana, Cuba, 1969) graduated from the University of Havana with a major in English Language and Literature. He has also studied sculpture, ceramics, costume design for theatre and cinema, classical drawing and painting. 

His visual artwork has been awarded much recognition in Cuba as well as competitions in the United States. He has participated in more than 120 national and international group shows and 30 solo exhibitions. Some of his works are in private collections in Cuba, the United States, Venezuela, Colombia, Mexico, Spain, Portugal, Brazil, Ecuador, Japan, Greece, Germany, Chile, Switzerland, England and Norway. His work is also part of the permanent collection of Cleveland Marshall College of Law / Cleveland State University and The Artists Archives of the Western Reserve (AAWR).

Augusto's literary works have been published in magazines such as Kastello, and Hojas Literarias (Spain). He has also written and illustrated short stories for children and teacher activities’ guides. He was the founder and main teacher of "Taller de Niños" (Children’s Studio) at 23 & 12 Art Center in Havana, and also the co-founder of the multimedia marketing company "2 Pasos." He co-founded and co-directed “Proyecto Horizontal”, a partnership of 65 Cuban artists, in which capacity he was invited to curate and present a group show at Cleveland State University 1999.  Between 2002 and 2005, he was the founder and editor of The Art Fix - an electronic weekly newsletter that showcased and promoted local, national and international artists.  Augusto has participated as a costume and float designer at different carnivals in Cuba and also at Parade the Circle in Cleveland, Ohio. He has assisted in landscape designs of public spaces, coordinated community art programs and created many public art pieces across Ohio. 

Augusto is a teaching artist at the Center for Arts-inspired Learning (previously known as Young Audiences of Northeast Ohio), The Art House and the Ohio Arts Council. He has served as a board member at Near West Theater, and is currently a board member with the Center for Arts-inspired Learning. He is a member of CSU’s Cleveland Arts Education Consortium Diversity Committee. He has been featured as a guest lecturer at Cleveland State University and Baldwin Wallace University. 

To see more of Augusto’s work, please visit his website: http://www.augustofineart.com/afa-studio.html.


back to top