In the early 20th century, as development spread in the last rural area on Manhattan’s northern tip, construction began to raze old farmlands preparing to lay out streets. In 1903, workers found a burial ground near 10th Avenue and 212th Street. The reports said “huge skeletons” with “iron balls and chains hanging from their limbs,” some buried in an upright position, had been found in a grove of trees on top of a knoll that rose 12 feet above 10th Avenue. They confirmed that the human remains were “African” and agreed the site was a burial ground for the enslaved. Writing about the site in 1924, Reginald Pelham Bolton observed: “The dread of ‘an uprising of blacks’ in 1722 prompted an act providing that all negroes and blacks be buried by daylight. The act was amended afterward so that not more than twelve negroes should attend a funeral. The penalty for the violation of this statute was a public flogging. The corpses were buried in a shroud denying the slaves to be buried without any outward signs of grief, ceremonial tokens, nor flowers. In addition to their clothing, they had been stripped of identity, heritage and any trace of home or homeland. Only a child’s skeleton was reported to be found, with a little bead necklace. The discovery was of no importance to contractors and after piling all the bones for a brief examination from authorities and museum representatives, wasted no time in obliterating all trace of the site.” With development, especially during the 1920’s construction of the subway lines, more remains and sites continued to be found which included slaves, the fallen of the Revolutionary War and Native Americans. While the bones of the settlers, prominent families and war heroes were reinterred in nearby cemeteries, the rest of the remains suffered a final injustice. “The remains of these humble workers of the past reminds us of the time when, even in this neighborhood, the practice of slavery was customary. Perhaps no other relic of the past could more decidedly mark the difference between the past and the present than the bones of these poor unwilling immigrants, whose labors cleared the primeval forest, cultivated the unturned sods, and prepared the way for the civilization that followed.” -RPB

 


APPROPRIATED INTENTIONS
RECEPTION: Saturday, Aug.29 / 6PM
Inwood Hill Park  - New York, NY 10034

Participating ARTISTS:
- Nelson Álvarez

-Pablo Caviedes

- Darwin Erazo

- Alex “Fdez” Fernández

- Julia Justo

- Ricardo Llanos

-Alexis Mendoza

-Franck de las Mercedes

-Naivy Pérez

- Amy Ponce

-Yali Romagoza

-Moses Ros

- Daniel Sánchez

- Luis Stephenberg

- Ed Vasquez

- Ching Wen Tsai

*Especial urban intervention #CAJAARTE,

organized by the New York Latin American Art Triennial.

 

CURATORIAL STATEMENT:

The exhibition is focusing on the appropriation of a public space, occupied the empty walls of vacant space. The artists must create for a site-specific exhibition, freely express ideas, and present their creations to the public. More importantly the intention of this project is to create awareness of the appropriation of this land by the colonial investors and the displacement of the original natives habitants of this area, this park, these tunnels. By organizing this exhibition, we as artists are symbolically recognizing that this land it’s not our. The artworks presented are exploring the current issues in our society, but also expressed the ephemeral character that the artworks proposed. It’s like artists are sacrificing their works, they are becoming offering to the land. The exhibition includes perishable and temporary art, artworks that are going to be taken by nature or consume by the passage of time. The exhibition also expressed the idea that each artist is contributing to collective discourse instead of an individual point of view.

 

History tells us that in May of 1626, Dutch West India Company representatives Peter Minuit met with local Lenape Native Americans to purchase the rights to the island of Manhattan for the value of 60 guilders. We don’t know who signed the deal with Minuit, but it could have been the Canarsees, who didn’t have much of a footprint in Manhattan, rather than the Weckquaesgeeks, who lived north of the Dutch on the island. The exact value of 60 guilders in modern dollars is irrelevant – the transaction itself involved a useful but not particularly pricey set of European tools.

 

“Appropriated Intentions”, calls for open dialogue, a discussion about the roll of art in history. The tunnels present themselves as empty arch walls and brute flooring dominating exterior balance of the space. Admittedly, it would have been easy – and somewhat unscientific – to present an exhibition on the appropriation of space as a hodgepodge of squatting and hippie camp sites. Instead, the organizers of the project invited the creative minds of local artists and adopted the work-with-what-you-can-find attitude of squatters, but applied it in a slightly different way to the space, presenting painting, photography, drawing, sculpture, installation and video in the conventional setting but in a space that it’s not designed to hold an art exhibition.

 










 

 

 


After 20 years in the art game, I’m quite certain I never fit the mold of a creative mob psychology nor an establishment who dictates what's acceptable or worthy. That rejection didn’t stop me from pursuing my career independently and making the art that I wanted to make, even if my body of work lacked uniformity or cohesion to the galleries. For many of them, cohesion is key; but for me art has been a search that I could only document through an eclectic aesthetic. “Why can't you stick to one subject or approach? I don’t know. Maybe because the emotional variant in a human being is more important to me than style.
On the other hand, there’s the “one shoe fits all” approach constantly pitched to independent artists. “You need more followers, have you tried this platform? you need more selfies, do a vlog, do what works for other artists! I can tell you how!" The voices out there are as many and endless as the voices in my head. And yet, most had nothing to do with what I do, my vision, mission or what being an artist means to me.
Before I became an artist, I was an aspiring actor. Art opened a door of autonomy and exploration that I was not finding memorizing other people's lines. Perhaps I’ve approached my art as roles in plays or movies. When did art become "-You must only play cowboys or villains.”? Don't get me wrong, I admire and studied plenty artists who develop a single style and one subject matter their whole and body of work. But that is their search and who they are. 
Who I am is an artist with an obsessive-compulsive personality. The obsessions come and go, but worse than the "fitting in" dilemma is my mood when I don't creatively address or execute those obsessions because I'm being mindful of "fortuna critica" or slipped into the "mob psychology". I became an artist to claim my human individuality, to find out who I was and my role in this world.  "The creator cannot follow the well-trodden path, he has to search out his own way, he has to inquire in the jungles of life, he has to go alone, he has to be a dropout from the mob mind, from the collective psychology" said Osho.
I don’t know what’s in store for independent artist from this point on. But I do believe this moment we’re living in, though uncertain and critical, is the perfect opportunity to reexamine our path and continue to find our autonomy and independence in all aspects of our existence. 





SUMMER OF FRANCK

FDLM STUDIO'S ANNUAL "ONLINE SUMMER OPEN STUDIO"
It's that time of year to start, or add to your collection of works by Franck de Las Mercedes, or perhaps find an artful gift for a special someone. We're throwing in $100 to get you motivated!
Enter Code: COLLECTART at checkout to claim $100 towards your purchase of original works at the FDLM SHOP.

Tell your people and thank you for supporting this independent artist! zfmq_202007065.png  
STAND HERE:EQUALITY

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  LIFE IN THE STUDIO:WORK IN PROGRESS
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Exposición Virtual:

La Noche Larga de Museos de La Paz, Bolivia Presenta
  Estamos Aquí Sin Dejar de Estar Allá

El Reconocido Pintor Nicaragüense Franck de las Mercedes Presenta Nueva Obra En Nueva Exposición Virtual

 Mayo, 2020 -- La Noche Larga de Museos de La Paz, Bolivia - El gobierno municipal de La Paz, DCH Fine Arts en conjunción con la Trienal de Arte Latinoamericano de Nueva York realizan una exhibición virtual para la XIV Noche Larga de Museos. Titulada “Estamos Aquí Sin Dejar de Estar Allá” el evento hace referencia al concepto del espacio que ha cambiado las percepciones de la humanidad en las últimas semanas en la era del Covid-19.  Sus curadores, Dante Chumacero y Ezequiel Taveras se dieron a la tarea de seleccionar artistas internacionales a presentar obras, tours virtuales desde sus talleres, al igual que charlas con el publico.   “Estamos lejos y distanciados, pero acercándonos todos más que nunca. La modalidad virtual permitirá a nuestro evento mostrarnos desde todas partes en tiempo real, esperandoalcanzar a un público diverso de todas las edades que pueda descubrir el trabajo de nuestrostalentosos artistas.” Dice el curador Dante Chumacero  

 

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El internacionalmente reconocido artista plástico Franck de las Mercedes estará presentando un tour virtual de su nueva serie de pinturas “Espacio Negativo” desde Nueva York el viernes 22 de mayo de 10:10 a 11:20 pm EST. La transmisión del evento se realizará a través de a siguiente página de Facebook:

 

https://www.facebook.com/DCHFineArts  

 

En esta exposición, el artista neoyorquino de origen nicaragüense  Franck de las Mercedes, estrena una nueva serie que explora el contraste entre la historia, la vida cotidiana antes del Coronavirus, y el contexto cultural actual que lo llevaron a crear escenas inquietantemente obras en un panorama urbano.  Reconocido internacionalmente por su multifacética y prolífica trayectoria y proyectos de arte público, su obra captura un vibrante uso del color el cual aborda el sufrimiento de los demás ycelebra la resiliencia del espíritu humano.    XIV Noche Larga de Museos se lleva acabo del 18 al 23 de mayo del presente de 18:00 a 00:00. Esta versión será íntegramente virtual debido a la llegada del Covid-19.


BRONX STUDIES
New paintings by
Franck de las Mercedes
October 2nd to October 31st, 2019

Opening Reception: October 3rd, 2019
Time: 6:00 – 9:00 PM
240 E 153rd St, The Bronx, NY 10451

New York -- BxArts Factory is pleased to invite you to the opening reception of Bronx Studies, new paintings by our artist-in-residence Franck de las Mercedes. The exhibition is comprised of 15 works of art and is the result of weeks of examining the Bronx as subject-matter. From the street corner, to a garden and a simple fence, the rich cultural diversity of the borough is reflected in each canvas.

De las Mercedes finds influence from looking at how life behaves around him, with broken street signs, graffiti murals and street art often informing his use of color - sometimes complex and vibrant, sometimes limited to two or three pigments. It’s a visual constellation, a strict adherence to observable fact that suggests De las Mercedes falls outside the boundaries of the rules of art, yet his brushwork and technique embody the most advanced aspects of contemporary painting.

Franck de las Mercedes (FdlM) (born 1972 in Masaya, Nicaragua), is an artist who lives and works in New York City. Franck's experience as a child in war-torn Nicaragua, the visual clash of New York's graffiti and an interest in the abstract expressionism movement played a major role in his evolution as a visual artist. With a self-obtained education, straight from the aisles of the Mid-Manhattan Public Library, Franck de las Mercedes has emerged as one of the country's most prolific artists in recent years. Incorporating elements of photography, drawings, journal pages and text art, Franck creates frenetic paintings with energetic abstractions bursting with color. FdlM draws inspiration from his New York backdrop and the effect that time and the elements have on urban surfaces. Referencing past experiences, trauma and family relationships in real life and literature, he creates psychologically-charged imagery.
BxArts Factory is a grassroots, 501c3, non-profit organization that connects Bronx-based artist and community, in experiences, events and opportunities for connection, community development and healing. We assist affiliated artists to engage and advance the Arts in communities throughout the borough via a diverse set of arts-oriented programming and services. Through collaborations with local artists and community-based organizations, we offer dynamic arts programming that incorporates education and showcase a variety of art genres. The BxArts Factory provides unique and engaging experiences to advance the Arts and cultural education in the Bronx.


This week marks an unprecedented achievement for me that I did not plan nor expect to happen: I will have paintings simultaneously on display at three New York exhibits. I am grateful and humbled and hope you can catch one of the shows.  

 

Studio 13 Gallery at BxArts Factory Presents

BRONX STUDIES
zfmq_FranckDeLasMercedesPostcard1.jpg   New paintings by Franck de las Mercedes October 2nd to October 31st, 2019   Opening Reception: October 3rd, 2019 Time: 6:00 – 9:00 PM 240 E 153rd St, The Bronx, NY 10451   BxArts Factory is pleased to invite you to the opening reception of Bronx Studies, new paintings by our artist-in-residence Franck de las Mercedes. The exhibition is comprised of 15 works of art and is the result of weeks of examining the Bronx as subject-matter. From the street corner, to a garden and a simple fence, the rich cultural diversity of the borough is reflected in each canvas.      "De las Mercedes finds influence from looking at how life behaves around him, with broken street signs, graffiti murals and street art often informing his use of color - sometimes complex and vibrant, sometimes limited to two or three pigments. It’s a visual constellation, a strict adherence to observable fact that suggests De las Mercedes falls outside the boundaries of the rules of art, yet his brushwork and technique embody the most advanced aspects of contemporary painting." Alexis Mendoza, Curator    

 

“Progressive Transition”

The New York Latin American Art Triennial 2019
 zfmq_20190919202052.jpgQueens College Art Center
Participating Artists: Franck de las Mercedes, Naivy Pérez, Francheska Alcantara, Diogenes Ballester, Humberto Figueroa, Blanka Amezkua, Marcos Dimas, Gustavo Alfredo Larsen, Juan Manuel EspinozaYsla, Rafael Rodriguez, Rene Maynez and Diego Anaya   September –November 5th 2019 Queens College Art Center
Rosenthal Library Clock Tower, 6th Floor
65-30 Kissena Boulevard, Flushing.      

 

Color Speaks Truth

A Solo Exhibition of Works by Franck De Las Mercedes zfmq_20190928173748.jpg
September  - December 8th, 2019 One Rriver Larchmont
2081 Boston Post Road
Larchmont, NY 10538
914-893-6111
Larchmont@oneriverschool.com
The show is curated by Art Historian and Museum Consultant, Carol Ward.
The exhibition will be open to the public from September to December 8th, 2019.   "De Las Mercedes’ work showcases a joyful energy through movement and color that pulls the viewer into the compositions. Once there, the viewer encounters explorations of various ideas of culture, political commentary and truth. This exhibition continues One River's goal to showcase New York artists with a strong voice who our students and community can learn from and engage with both on the visual level and to enhance their own art making journeys."
--Carol Ward, Art Historian, Museum Consultant and Curator
   
   

CONNECT WITH ME:

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“Color Speaks Truth” at One River School of Art + Design Gallery
  Opening in Larchmont, NY this Saturday at One River School of Art + Design Gallery, is “Color Speaks Truth: A Solo Exhibition of Works by Franck De Las Mercedes”.
"De Las Mercedes’ work showcases a joyful energy through movement and color that pulls the viewer into the compositions. Once there, the viewer encounters explorations of various ideas of culture, political commentary and truth. This exhibition continues One River's goal to showcase New York artists with a strong voice who our students and community can learn from and engage with both on the visual level and to enhance their own art making journeys."
--Carol Ward, Art Historian, Museum Consultant and Curator  
Color Speaks Truth: A Solo Exhibition of Works by Franck De Las Mercedes

On View September  - December 2019 Opening Reception: Saturday, September 28th 6pm-8pm Location: 2081 Boston Post Road, Larchmont, NY 10538   zfmq_onerivesss.jpg   Franck de las Mercedes lives and works in New York City.  His multifaceted body of work includes painting, collage, drawing, photography and writing. His paintings combine abstract figuration, journal entry, and hieroglyphic-like text, in energetic abstractions bursting with color. Franck’s personal history, childhood memories and upbringing are extracted and combined with fragments of current events, family dynamics and books. Exploring the contrast between memory and present-day cultural context, Franck creates scenes of an emotionally charged urban landscape.  
About Franck De Las Mercedes

https://www.artfdlm.com/biocv

About One River
https://oneriverschool.com/about-us/

HI RES IMAGES (Courtesy FdlM Studio)
Invite:

https://1drv.ms/u/s!AtTT_1i9o6gTiqwdGEIsndKphPwN-Q?e=LsTrIl  

Artwork:

https://1drv.ms/u/s!AtTT_1i9o6gTiqwgoVfASLCjyyk0eg?e=HfJWYV h

ttps://1drv.ms/u/s!AtTT_1i9o6gTiqwfcxBaGyxnt3GE5Q?e=9d6sRT    

Artist:

https://1drv.ms/u/s!AtTT_1i9o6gTiqwekUwwCnRBOfGeqA?e=0j3Xib