It would be surprising if De La Nuez wasn’t Included in the “Who’s Who List of the Most Collected Artists of Our Time” because his art engages with so many on so many levels. There is a wink in all his works, welcoming the viewer to be in on the narrative. ‘Oh Pool Boy’ conjures up images of all kinds of good and bad behavior. ‘You Know Me Darling, Wine First, Talk Later’ pretty much sums up relationships, at least from the female point of view. ‘But I’m A First Class Girl…I Can’t Fly Coach’ is a thought bubble over a young woman with tears in her eyes, a message that needs no explanation but always garners a laugh. And ‘Wake Me Up For Champagne’ implies it better be the good stuff.
The fact that humor is integral to Nelson’s work should come as no surprise as it’s part of his personality. When asked what’s something no one knows about you? His response was, ‘I love hiding. Seriously, I hide behind curtains, under tables and make people find me. I don’t come out until they do.” And what is hanging in his house? A 1904 original magic piece from Carter the Great of course. Add to that David Copperfield owning a De La Nuez and it makes one wonder if perhaps you have to appreciate magic to create it. That certainly seems to be the case for Nelson as he pays homage to many of his predecessors in the pop arena like Lichtenstein and Warhol while continuing to expand the genre with his own unique spin of irreverent, edgy commentary on the cultural evolution of the human race with Botox Boxes promising 1000 units of pure vanity, 3-d sculptures of decadent donuts, Mr. Monopoly brandishing Hermes and vibrant, sexy works on paper that look to be torn from a sketchbook. His image library collected over years creates the ideal nostalgic backdrop to his unique works on canvas. And then there are some of his pieces that are just a fun call to action like ‘Live A Fuck Yes Life’ from a French bulldog wearing a crown and circles saying Let’s Get Naked and Smell The Roses.
“I like to think of my art as a perfectly balanced cocktail, meant to be savored and enjoyed, with each sip revealing new depths and dimensions. A bold, radiant mix of flavors and textures. Sweet and spicy notes, with a hint of heat and a splash of color. Served straight up or on the rocks, it leaves you dying for another round.”
It’s been said that there are five keys to success for an artist. Persistence, patience, passion, a sense of adventure and discipline. But being born with the talent certainly doesn’t hurt. Originally from Cuba, Nelson’s creative process is often fueled by Sinatra or Mozart, depending on the piece. He draws his inspiration from the world of today, the world of yesterday, what crosses his path and his tireless imagination. Static is a four-letter word to Nelson and trial and error are his accomplices which often keeps him at the studio deep into the night.
The White Room Gallery has represented De La Nuez exclusively for years in the Hamptons after having met Nelson’s manager aka wife, Stacy Bell, at Art Basel in Miami. She was one of his earlier collectors, purchasing ‘Cocktails From Hell,’ which featured the Devil serving a tray of libations. Stacy was a beautiful model/actress who also happened to have remarkable taste and an acumen for marketing and thus a wonderful partnership was born. Other notable collectors of Nelson’s include Sarah Jessica Parker, Howie Mandel, Kaley Cuoco, Kelly Clarkson, Diane Warren and the late great Carrie Fisher.
So certain was Nelson of his artistic path that he never had that plan b but for a brief moment did consider getting into film directing as he was forever fascinated with the depths of his favorite film, The Wizard of Oz and directing shares a lot of the same principles that guides his art, such as a focus on composition, color and symbolism. Imagine his delight when he was selected by Warner Bros. as the official artist to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the film. Sometimes, the stars truly do align.
Next life for De La Nuez, ‘Artist for sure. Let me just pick up where I left off. Unless, of course, rock star is an option.’
WAKE ME UP FOR CHAMPAGNE is on view 6/27-7/16 with opening reception Saturday, July 1st 5-7pm. Concurrent with his exhibit is the Hamptons Fine Art Fair, July 13-16th, Booth #325 where we bring the Gallery’s finest to Hamptons’ finest. Next up is BOWIE, BEYONCE & BEYOND featuring Markus Klinko, the famed celebrity photographer who launched Beyonce’s first album and captured Bowie’s last. The reception for that is Saturday July 22nd, 5-7pm.
To bring in some local talent the Gallery is next featuring Bob Tabor with MOON DANCE proof that there is an obvious benefit to an insomniac with a tripod. Bob hits the beaches of the Hamptons to capture the moon and waves when pretty much everyone else is capturing z’s. The reception for this exhibit is Thursday, August 10th 5-7pm. Closing out the summer is REBEL REBEL featuring the one and only Russell Young who brings icons to life via mug shots, diamond dust and inimitable paints of the artist’s creation like Blood Red, Wild Mauve, Vegas Bold, Blind Red, Lightning Pink and Acid Green. The reception for this exhibit is Thursday, August 24th, 5-7pm. Be sure to mark your calendars so as not to miss a beat because as Brazilian artist Romero Britto said, ‘Art is too important not to share.”
For more info, visit https://thewhiteroom.gallery/