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Los Angeles

Riverside Art Museum

Exhibition Detail
3425 Mission Inn Avenue
Riverside, CA 92501

September 6th, 2007 - November 10th, 2007
September 6th, 2007 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
inland empire
Tuesday through Saturday, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Sunday, 1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
An exhibition of linoleum prints and blocks by Jesus Cruz, Jr
Thursday, September 6 – Saturday, November 10
Opening Reception: Thursday, September 6, 6-9 PM

“Faces From The Block,” an exhibition of linoleum prints and blocks by Jesus Cruz, Jr. opens September 6 at the Riverside Art Museum.

The prints are created with the traditional technique of carving blocks of linoleum with knives, which are inked and run through a press, leaving a copy of the carved block’s image on the paper.  “He’s the master carver of Riverside,” said Jorge Fernandez of Division 9 Gallery, where Cruz has displayed artwork in prior exhibits. “I enjoy the contrast of his black and white prints, because they show so much detail.”

Although he works in a traditional medium, Cruz’s work has a very modern look, one that sits well at the intersection of contemporary graphic design and tattoos, albeit with a nod to indigenous motifs.

Cruz’s style is immediately identifiable by his use of thick lines and solid fields of paint, often combining figurative and abstract elements with a woodblock-cut appearance. The prints in the exhibition include faces of alternatively beautiful and tough women and men from around the neighborhood in both natural and contorted expressions.

In opposition to the many artists who pass on their artistic traditions to their children, Cruz was inspired to first create linoleum prints when he saw the artwork his son produced in classes at Riverside Community College. In 2002, he signed up for the printmaking course and has been hooked ever since.

Having retired in July from a 33-year career teaching elementary school, Cruz is now dedicating his time to creating his artwork. As a teacher, Cruz had used pen and ink to make illustrations for his students. The transition from paper to printing block has been a natural one for him.

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