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Installation view

Installation view

Installation view

Installation view

Installation view

Installation view

Installation view

Installation view

Enrique Alférez, Lovers, 1980-1999

Enrique Alférez

Lovers, 1980-1999

Csast bronze

19 x 13 x 8 inches

Edition 1/6

Enrique Alférez Kneeling Bather Washing Hair, 20th Century

Enrique Alférez
Kneeling Bather Washing Hair, 20th Century
Cast bronze
9 x 9 1/2 x 8 1/2 inches
Edition of 6

Enrique Alférez Reclining Nude, 20th Century

Enrique Alférez
Reclining Nude, 20th Century
Cast bronze
6 x 16 x 9 inches
Edition of 6

Enrique Alférez Bather, 20th Century

Enrique Alférez
Bather, 20th Century
Cast bronze, stained wood base
7 1/2 x 9 1/2 x 8 inches
Edition of 6

Enrique Alférez Seated Bather Washing Foot, 20th Century

Enrique Alférez
Seated Bather Washing Foot, 20th Century
Cast bronze
11 x 7 x 7 1/2 inches
Edition of 6

Enrique Alférez Kneeling Lament, 20th Century

Enrique Alférez
Kneeling Lament, 20th Century
Cast bronze
16 x 17 1/4 x 11 inches
Edition of 6

Enrique Alférez Remorse, 20th Century

Enrique Alférez
Remorse, 20th Century
Cast bronze
10 x 13 x 11 inches
Edition of 6

Enrique Alférez Drying Bather, 20th Century

Enrique Alférez
Drying Bather, 20th Century
Cast bronze
15 x 11 x 7 inches
Edition of 6

Enrique Alférez Charro con Quirt, 1980 - 1999

Enrique Alférez
Charro con Quirt, 1980 - 1999
Cast bronze
19 x 8 x 5 1/4 inches
Edition of 6

Enrique Alférez Charro Mucho, 1980 - 1999

Enrique Alférez
Charro Mucho, 1980 - 1999
Cast bronze
18 3/4 x 9 x 6 inches
Edition of 6

Enrique Alférez Charro, 1980 - 1999

Enrique Alférez
Charro, 1980 - 1999
Cast bronze
18 1/2 x 8 x 5 1/4 inches
Edition of 6

Enrique Alférez Charro with Fighting Cock, 1980 - 1999

Enrique Alférez
Charro with Fighting Cock, 1980 - 1999
Cast bronze
18 1/2 x 8 x 5 1/4 inches
Edition of 6

Enrique Alférez Charro Hastiado, 1980 - 1999

Enrique Alférez
Charro Hastiado, 1980 - 1999
Cast bronze
14 1/2 x 12 x 7 inches
Edition of 6

Enrique Alférez (1903 – 1999)

LOVERS

February 17 – March 30, 2024

Opening Reception: Saturday, February 17, 6 – 8 pm

Octavia Art Gallery presents LOVERS, an exhibition of sculptures and drawings by Art Deco artist Enrique Alférez. The gallery is proud to represent the Estate of Enrique Alférez, and to host the first solo exhibition for the artist in the gallery. This retrospective has been assembled 25 years since the passing of the artist.

Artist Enrique Alférez was born in the state of Zacatecas, Mexico and lived nearly the entire 20th century. After service in the Mexican Revolution as a youth, he emigrated to Texas, studied sculpture at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and in 1929 first made his way to Louisiana. For almost 70 years, he worked in New Orleans. His lasting imprint is seen among Art Deco figurative sculptures, monuments, fountains, and architectural details in prominent locations from the Central Business District to the shore of Lake Pontchartrain and to New Orleans City Park.

Enrique Alférez’s career has followed the historical development of sculpture in America in the 20th century. He has survived the critical preoccupation with sculptural abstraction and minimalism to see a renewed interest in the human figure in contemporary art.

Alférez's sculpture was most frequently based on the human form, primarily the female figure. He was a modernist who leaned on realism and drew extensively from classical sculpture, with careful attention to the revelation of character through physical features. He strove to better define the human figure and to capture emotion, individuality, and relationships between his subjects. Alférez also infused some of his figurative sculptures, bas-reliefs, and wood carvings with metaphor, allegory, and myth.
- Katie Bowler Young, author of Enrique Alférez: Sculptor

For LOVERS, Octavia presents a collection of Alférez’s works, spanning seventy years, which are created out various materials, including bronze, terra-cotta, and wood, as well as drawings. The defining work in the exhibition, Lovers, depicts a man and woman embracing in a life size bronze sculpture with a rotating base. The larger-than-life South Wind is taken from Alférez’s Fountain of the Four Winds, consisting of four kneeling figures, three female and one male, representing the four mythological winds. The South Wind holds a cloud over her shoulder, as though lifting it as a vessel toward the sky. Other notable bodies of work exhibited are Alférez’s religious figures, pietá, and an altar piece. A collection of bronze Charros, which depict the traditional horsemen who participate in rodeo, or charrería, originating from Alférez’s home state of Zacatecas. And lastly, several of Alférez’s cast bronze and hand built terra-cotta female nudes will be exhibited. Art critic Roger Green remarked that the terra-cotta pieces had a “pitted surface texture” that he found “wonderfully suggestive and sensuous.”

Alférez's work can be found in numerous private collections around the world, Chicago, Memphis, Baton Rouge and in New Orleans at the New Orleans Museum of Art, the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, the New Orleans Lakefront Airport, the Audubon Zoo, Poydras Street Corridor, and Charity Hospital, among others. The Helis Foundation Enrique Alférez Sculpture Garden, at City Park in the New Orleans Botanical Garden, is a fitting tribute to an artist who contributed substantially to the aesthetic environment. Also, within the park, Alférez's work can be seen on many of the iconic bridges and benches, Popp Fountain, and the gates of Tad Gormley Stadium.

The citizens of New Orleans take great pride in the unique treasury of public sculpture that Enrique Alférez has created within the city.