Oliver Sanchez is Miami's Best Kept Secret
By Brett Sokol
When Scharf decided to move to Miami Beach in 1992, it didn’t take much to convince Sanchez, his wife and their newborn daughter to follow. However, the city that greeted them was a far cry from the sleepy burg Sanchez left in 1977. And if the transformation of South Beach from a retiree haven into the American Riviera wasn’t jarring enough, Art Basel has helped make Miami into a bona fide art city. “Today, an artist doesn’t need to leave Miami to find a viable industry.”
Lately Sanchez has even found time to focus on his own artwork. Hanging in his studio is a series of figurative paintings based on iconic postwar photos, many recasting an uplifting moment—the inoculation of a small child, scientists gleefully perched over a primitive robot—in a more ominous light. “We’re in the age of recreation,” Sanchez says. “These are pictures that strike me, that I want to bring to the forefront.” A familiar mischievous smile returns to his face: “I’m not trying to outdo the original photo. A painting of a rose will never match the power of an actual rose. But something happens along the way. And that’s the beauty of making art—it’s not finite. It’s an ongoing conversation.”
Swampspace Gallery (3821 NE First Ct., Miami) features new work by David Rohn on Saturday, October 9, from 6 to 11 PM. For information, visit swampspace.blogspot.com.
PHOTOGRAPH BY GREG MINASIAN (SANCHEZ, STUDIO); COURTESY OF OLIVER SANCHEZ (SCULPTURES, PHOTOS, STAGE SET)