El Zorro y La Flor: Ronald Vill
Creativity finds a way in El Zorro y La Flor, a bountiful new series by Ronald Vill comprised of 72 digital drawings and an accompanying short film.
Wrestling with notions of ideal ways to spend time while in quarantine versus the reality of his everyday activities and anxieties, the series ebbs and flows in tone and style along with Ronald’s emotions as he processes his ever-changing environment in real time. As he shares with us these intimate visual diary entries made during a period of enforced confinement in Havana, he discovers and reveals to us a new facet of his expression.
Ronald is known for creating highly stylized, staged photographs, often featuring intriguing characters in a single frame narrative, but here he sets his camera aside and casts himself as the anti-hero, El Zorro (The Fox). Interacting with the omnipresent COVID-19 virus, seemingly ironically represented by the delicate Sakura flower, El Zorro vainly attempts to elude the virus as it self-propagates and infuses itself throughout his everyday in unexpected and invasive ways.
In Japanese culture Sakura blossoms represent renewal and optimism during winter’s end and the onset of spring. They are an enduring metaphor for human existence, linked to Buddhist ideas around mortality, mindfulness and living in the present moment. For Ronald, the Sakura blossom represents freedom and flourishing and was chosen as a symbol to combat confinement and fear of death. He evokes the deep spiritual traditions associated with the fleeting pink blooms to remind us that life is short and beautiful (just like the cherry blossom that falls from the tree after a few short days) and that we should pay attention to the brilliance in everyday life.
With the hope of spreading art like a virus, but in a healing way, we’re offering high-resolution downloads of all the El Zorro y La Flor images for free or a pay-what-you-wish amount, with all proceeds going to Global Giving's Coronavirus Relief Fund. A full color catalog is available for purchase in our new online shop. Limited edition prints will be sold through the gallery and the online exhibition will run until a vaccine is found.
The artist lives and works in Havana, Cuba.