US artists Kurtis Ceppetelli and Matthew Malone are a creative duo who have been painting together since 2009. They recently travelled to Cuba to meet its people and experience the atmosphere of the Caribbean island, before incorporating these influences into their work.
The result is an upcoming show in their hometown, Washington DC.
“As artists we are constantly searching for inspiration and, until recently, Cuba has been a country that has been entirely blocked off from all American influence,” explains Malone. “We came here in our search to discover a culture and people that, in one sense, seem very pure.”
The duo paint together on the same canvas. They compare their painting process to the way jazz musicians play, sometimes working together, at other times taking one step back to observe the other.
This technique allows for dramatic changes in mood, colour, and feeling within each piece and leads to surprising and often unexpected results.
“This project seems to have taken on a new life from our other work,” says Ceppetelli. “Living and breathing with the people within the ruins of the architecture that has somehow surrendered to their people has worked its way into our images. It feels like there’s a lot of texture involved. It breathes a lot more.”
The ‘Duly Noted Painters’ as they are known are currently showing a retrospective of their work over the past five years at the Brookland Artspace Gallery in Washington, DC. An exhibition of their Cuba-inspired work is scheduled in the US capital next January.