Juggling Acts, ca. 1990
oil on canvas
64 1/4 x 92 inches
Miguel Padura was born in Havana in 1957.
"I was four years old when my family moved to Rodas, in the province of Las Villas. My father was an engineer and I wanted to be one as well. He would do a lot of drawings related to his profession and I was always with him. That's how I started, although it was not until I was seventeen or eighteen that I seriously considered dedicating myself to painting. I took my first classes with Roberto Martínez. He taught me how to see, how to perceive through my own eyes, not through his, like so many teachers tend to do. He helped me develop what I had inside, my own way of looking at things. Although I have integrated the abstract into my work, I consider myself a figurative painter. I have always been fascinated by still-life, and although I may modify it in some way or other, it will always have a place in my work. For me, art means being able to bring to the surface one's deepest feelings, one's way of knowing and seeing the world, the way one wants it to be seen. I am a bit selfish; I paint for myself, to please myself. Perhaps my Cubanness comes out subconsciously in my work. I remember Cuba as a tranquil place; at home there was solitude and silence. In this sense Cuba influences my painting, because tranquillity and solitude is what I want to paint."