Ricardo Fabián Fernández Díaz

The Cage / La jaula

Drawing - 2023
Graphite on paper
60 x 50 cm
200 USD
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Artwork Statement

Currently, about 284 million people suffer from anxiety disorders and approximately 50 million suffer from epileptic seizures.


"Portrait with Open Eyes" is a series of works that address mental health disorders from an autobiographical point of view. Restlessness, insecurity and panic are some of the feelings I work on in each piece, turning them into visual metaphors that try to materialize the intangible nature of such concepts. Starting from the bases of modern surrealism, I use the graphite technique to capture that state in which the brain functions as a trigger, converting trivial situations such as "sleeping" into potential fears that limit the vital development of those who suffer from them (an experience that gives name to the series).


To carry out my speech, I mainly use the self-portrait and the portrait of people who have been by my side in those episodes, as well as symbols that reinforce the concept of my theme. The zunzún, associated with healing and spiritual resurrection in pre-Columbian cultures, represents the peace achieved in the moments when one is able to forget the sudden nature of epilepsy. The hands, as an anatomical instrument of the human being, are associated with action and represent everything from doubts and restlessness to the constant fear generated by crises, functioning as a cage for hummingbirds.


With my work, I do not aim to trivialize or simplify anxiety, but rather to foster a deeper, more compassionate understanding. My goal is to destigmatize psychological disorders, elevate their discussion, and promote greater understanding in society. I want my work to serve as an invitation to reflection, open conversation and action in search of solutions and the creation of supportive environments to help those of us who struggle with these conditions find a path to healing and hope.


Artist's publications on Instagram: Photos and Making Of