Caio Fonseca, Tenth Street #16, 1993

Caio Fonseca (b. 1959)
Tenth Street #16, 1993
Acrylic on canvas
60 1/4 x 40 1/4 in (153 x 102.2 cm)
Purchased from Charles Cowles Gallery
The library building, Floor 7th

When you walk into Fonseca’s studio, you will find not only different colors of paints, brushes, or canvases but also a piano. Fonseca is an American painter and musician. He grew up in an artistic family, which influenced and encouraged him to become an artist himself. Living in New York, Paris, and Italy, Fonseca created his own original abstract art style. In Tenth Street #16, Fonseca chose a muted yellow as the background color for the entire canvas. He also used many lines and curves to create a layer on the surface. The prominent white rectangle evokes a time machine door that leads you to step in. The top right side geometrical shape combination resembles an eye. The many lines, dots, and scratches seem randomly placed; however, they were done on purpose in his work. While drafting, Fonseca measured the placement of each element and then constantly added and removed them, like a musical composer. Fonseca likes to find out what he is listening to on the path of making abstract paintings: His heart? Space? The pitch? Each image is an answer to his voice—an intimacy he shares with audiences.