Xavier Serra de Rivera (Barcelona, 1946) For the last few years Serra de Rivera has been painting human figures; before, he had used figures as means or symbols, but never as a main subject. When he was teaching at the Escola Fina, making students paint with live models, he decided to concentrate on this. I try to go beyond the simple figure and to make the presence of the person portrayed as strong as possible. It’s a question of perception, and therefore hard, if not impossible to describe. He paints until the figure appears in the painting; then he leaves it there for the viewer.
Xavier Serra de Rivera lives in Garrigàs and Barcelona, but usually works in Barcelona. He came to the Empordà by chance, without any family or emotional ties. He used to live in Paris and spent summers in Menorca. The Empordà was foreign to him. He had visited Cadaqués during its most splendid epoch, but wanted to leave as soon as he arrived, feeling oppressed, boxed in. But one day a friend from Vilajoan showed him the house in Garrigàs, the one with the fireplace and an interior garden tended to by his wife. The artist’s daily life is marked by discipline and routine in the studio, although at present he is preparing his next exhibitions. His work can be seen in two places in Barcelona: From April 15th to June 26th at the Fundació Vila Casas and at the Artur Ramon gallery after April 25th. He recounts that he had trouble coping with the solitude of the studio, and that is why he started teaching.