The Magic Realism of Rob Gonsalves

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Canadian painter Rob Gonsalves surrealistic paintings portrays two seemingly different realistic scenes magically merging into one. As a result, the term "Magic Realism" describes his work accurately.

During his childhood, Gonsalves developed an interest in drawing from imagination using various media. By the age of twelve, his awareness of architecture grew as he learned perspective techniques and he began to create his first paintings and renderings of imagined buildings. After an introduction to artists Dalí and Tanguy, Gonsalves began his first surrealist paintings. The "Magic Realism" approach of Magritte along with the precise perspective illusions of Escher came to be influences in his future work.

In his post college years, Gonsalves worked full time as an architect, also painting trompe-l'œil murals and theater sets. After an enthusiastic response in 1990 at the Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition, Gonsalves devoted himself to painting full time.

Although Gonsalves' work is often categorized as surrealistic, it differs because the images are deliberately planned and result from conscious thought. Ideas are largely generated by the external world and involve recognizable human activities, using carefully planned illusionist devices. Gonsalves injects a sense of magic into realistic scenes. He spends a notable amount of time planning each piece in order to make the transitions flawless and usually finishes about four paintings each year.

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