Kiki Valdes is an artist who likes to hurt a canvas before making love to it. In his attention-grabbing, expressionistic paintings, Valdes explores the tension between the figurative and abstract. He traffics in the weird and whimsical, creating absurdist narratives using cartoon masks and oddly bulging faces that lure viewers into a landscape that seems strangely familiar. Typically Valdes paints his surfaces with bold, colorful backgrounds, then cuts shapes from canvas he later applies to his paintings to create layered and textured collages. He culls inspiration from pop cultural neurosis, combining childhood reveries, quantum physics, American secret societies, string theory, and loopy Disney and Nickelodeon characters to create images that both provoke delight and anxiety. Saturday from 7 to 10 p.m., the inventive talent, who is repped by the Michael Margulies Artist Agency, is opening "The Valdeziacs" at 101 Exhibit (101 NE 40th St., Miami), his new suite of works in which the funny battles constantly with the fantastical.
Sat., April 27, 7-10 p.m., 2013