Carlos Rodriguez

b. 1980, La Soledad, San Luis Potosí, Mexico
Lives and works in Mexico City

Carlos is an artist based in Mexico City known for his drawings, paintings, and ceramics that explore the male body, sexual desire as a creative impulse, and issues of gender and identity. Inspired by classical painting, naïve art and porn, his playful work reveals scenes of men naturally engaged in their games and fantasies.

Primer Encuentro (First Encounter) is the painting that opens the series: Costumbres Amorosas de los Animales (The Loving Habits of Animals), Fortnight Institute NYC, October 2020. The idea for this painting had been sitting in my head since 2013. Although, in the first sketches, the man wore a rhinoceros mask.

The overall motif of the exhibition was to explore the similarities between human and animal behaviors when interacting with other living beings. Primer Encuentro is also a sort of fable about love at first sight. The character is naked in a mysterious and exotic jungle with Henry Rousseau's touch. He embraces a gigantic rhinoceros, in a magical encounter, under an intense orange sun that permeates everything.

The afternoon sun is my favorite light. It turns everything golden, with a touch of eternity, a sort of solemn happiness.

All the paintings have a small text on the back of the canvas. 

I imagined the moment when you meet someone for the first time as two inevitable forces colliding. The animals I related most to that brute and intense force were rhinoceroses, mainly because they are solitary, very territorial and practically blind creatures. And, in early medieval drawings, they seemed to be wearing strange armours.

So, I wrote:
Primer Encuentro (First Encounter): 
We, two irresistible forces that have met, 
lonesome and armoured, a little clumsy and blind, 
surrendering ourselves to a greater love.