John Rivas is a figurative painter whose narrative is guided by the stories of his ancestors. As a first-generation American, Rivas’ artwork is enriched with tales of family members many of whom he’s met remotely or through photographs.
Collaged objects are used as signifiers, a codex that Rivas has created to invite the viewer to decode the narrative. Rivas’ use of materials, his outpour of visceral emotion through gesture, and layered imagery lend to an emotionally charged narrative that is essential to the voice of immigrant lives.
Rivas graduated from the School of Visual Arts ‘19 and is now pursuing an MFA at Columbia.