In 2004, international artists Aaron Almendral and Mariano Delgado joined their talents in a collaborative venture. Calling themselves DNA, they began to specialize in portraits presented in their simplest form, capturing the subject’s special intangible qualities. The images are first sketched on canvas and then hand-painted with high quality acrylic paints; the colors are unique to each portrait and not replicated on another. Compositions derive from in-depth discussion of content and structure with both artists contributing equally.
DNA is New York based. Almendral was born in the Philippines and immigrated to the United States in 1986. He received his B.A. in Studio Arts from SUNY at Stonybrook. Delgado was born in Argentina and immigrated to the United States in 2001. He received a degree in Advertising from Universidad de Lomas de Zamora, Buenos Aires and a Master of Architecture from NJIT in 2011.
The artists began their collaboration by establishing “basic rules of production.” They chose only subjects involved with peace movements and human rights, and painted them in black over solid bright colors. Since their first series of portraits, DNA has continued to combine passion for social justice with creativity.
In an ongoing exploration of visual language, DNA recently began experimenting with the use of dramatic lines and geometric backgrounds. The paintings have become more imaginative with multiple levels of interpretation. One author describes the work as “Modern Reductionism” and explains: “Offering an interesting combination of visual simplicity juxtaposed onto colorful, geometric backgrounds, the pieces are dynamic and thought-provoking.”
DNA has been represented in over fifteen shows in New York City in the past few years. Their paintings are included in numerous private collections and are commissioned and exhibited globally. In 2006, a painting was chosen by a curator from Christie’s for the “ProyectArte: Auction of Contemporary Argentinean Art” at the Consulate General of Argentina.