2014 Art works 2015 Exhibitions 2016 exhibtions IN ENGLISH Promoting your Art Visual Jazz


It was a rainy morning that had turned into a lovely afternoon. You know the sort of day I mean. Wet streets that reflect the sunlight with enriched tones, trees with rain water droplets hanging from every leave. The air, cleared by nature and perfumed by the ozone coming from the warm wet grass of the park next door, while the cleansing wind felt slightly cooler from caressing the surface of all the wet buildings that surrounded us.

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THAT DAY (2014) – detail – by Ignacio Alperin

As usual, I was painting and listening to some jazz.

It was Kind of Blue, in vinyl, playing this time on an old record player rather than my usual garb. A gift from my late dear aunt Frances whom, after passing away, had left for me to enjoy.

I remember sill that at first I could not get it to work. It was a portable Phillips record player in bright red which packs like a little suitcase. Very cute, very shiny, and very silent.

I thought to myself, “Where will I be able to find someone to fix this?”

IAB_That Day_2014_60x80_edited
THAT DAY – Detail

It was, after all, more than 40 years old. So I gave it a try myself. As it happens, and as I fiddled with it for a while, I realized that it didn´t work simply because it had never been plugged in since purchased. It was brand new, seals untouched, warranty still in the box. Simply the contacts had rusted over the years from inaction.

A bit of cleaning and suddenly, I was off and running. The slightly tinny sound of the small speakers did not bother me. I had my huge Yamahas for everything else. This was the right sound for special moments.

And this was one of those special moments. As artists, we all – consciously or not – try to achieve some kind of immortality. Or at the very least, surpass our own life time by leaving behind something that may allow us to achieve a kind of “longevity” of sorts through our artistic works.

I envy – in a manner that is more healthy admiration – the fact that movie actors and musicians through image and sound can achieve this much more easily than us.

To me, listening to any of these recordings is like being in my house one moment, then I turn Kind of Blue on, and next thing I know, I am pushed into some type of time travelling gizmo. All of a sudden I am in 1959, standing in a corner of a studio while these guys, most of them long gone in 2016, come suddenly to life.

They look at each other, some smile, others concentrate while puffing smoke, others chew gum and read their music. Suddenly the voice behind the glass taps and says “Take one!”, and off they go. As I listen they are alive, they are immortal, they are playing “live” for me once again and they are great at it.

It is that very personal, very emotional connection, the one I use in my painting. It is a combination of admiration, melancholy, and happiness. My synesthesia helps along the way, and it all translates into colors and shapes, and hopefully feelings transmitted at a distance.

So I was painting and I thought to myself “This day” is “That day”. The wet trees, the sun coming through, Miles´ trumpet pushing the clouds, Evans keyboard giving a soundtrack to the wind, Cannonball and Coltrane caressing the grass, Chambers putting rhythm to the bounce of every rain drop, and Cobb simply reminding us of the summer storm that was quickly receding in the background.

And here is “That Day”.

The result of that beautiful rainy morning, and sunny afternoon, in which a great “live” band and myself just spent the time painting together.

IAB_That Day_2014_60x80
THAT DAY (2014) by Ignacio Alperin 60cm x 80cm Acrylic, oil based paints and sprays, and inks on canvas

Until next time!


PhotoFunia TV interference Regular 2014-08-04 01 55 05

©2016 by Ignacio Alperin Bruvera

2016 art works 2016 exhibtions Creativity / Creatividad IN ENGLISH Promoting your Art Visual Jazz What is Art


I know I am going to get myself in trouble for writing this.

Furthermore, I am probably going to get a lot of mails from artists who have come to my “Flash, Crash, Boom, Creative afternoon” lectures.

I like talking about the importance, for an artist – any artist – of being conscious of the significance of the “mythological” aspect of his or her story. I have always argued that the “selling point “ is as much the artist as the art.

Let´s take van Gogh as an example.


A painting he may have given in exchange for rent (100 bucks worth perhaps) has remained intact. It is always the same painting. It hasn´t gotten better with time. It is not wine – it isn´t that it has “aged well” -. It has not acquired flavors, or details in this case, which were not there before.

What has changed in our appreciation of the artist. It is van Gogh himself who has aged well. We have come to appreciate his story, his ways, his dramas, and his techniques better with time. And as a result, everything he has done has become something else. Each one of his paintings have become “a van Gogh”. His “mythology” has overpassed the painter and the flawed human being. And that is where the difference rests.

I always make the point of qualifying this view by pointing out that, by mythology, I do not mean becoming, or asking to be treated, like a “god” –although many colleagues do fall into this trap- , and neither do I mean that you should lie about your history.

It has to do with, simply put, being consciously aware that an artist´s story

This “may be” Banksy – who has built his own mythology by being secretive to the point of not ever showing his face –

is as much part of the process behind the growth in value of an artist work, as is the quality of work produced. People, more often than not, “buy” – engage, become interested, admire, or simply like – the artist first, and then they become interested in the art to the point of deciding to make a purchase (particularly when the price of a painting is above impulse purchase price).

This is so normal, that when in a newspaper we read that a famous painting is sold at a record price, for example, it is generally the case that the title usually implies that it is the artist who has been sold, while in the follow through we learn about the painting, sculpture or whatever it is really behind the news.

New Image


We “buy” Picasso, Van Gogh, Rauschenberg or Pollock. And we get – assuming we had the money – whatever painting is available at the time. The reason is twofold. On the one hand we understand there are market forces behind all these sales, as we are talking about investment grade painters and paintings after all. So whatever is available must be worth our while.

And secondly, we are talking about paintings that resist, endure, and grow in appreciation during a long period of time. And these facts usually have a common thread. In fact, each one of these works represent, in pictorial terms,  an intricate part of the artist´s life.

We are talking, then, about art that is a visible section of an artist´s passion. And that is also central to this equation. We are buying a piece of an artist´s identity, a piece of his artistic soul. Or at least that which will endure the passage of time. No matter what embelishments the artist may have made to his own story, what survive are the vestiges of his true self.

This is all very personal stuff. We are talking about an artist´s spirit, his or her heart, and in the case of those already gone, the legacy of work that is left behind and provides the artists with that desired immortality of sorts.

Yet many artists, in their desire to get to that special plateau, become mere caricatures of themselves. They make up stories, take on looks that are more for the benefit of others than a symbol of whom they are, and fictionalize their lives to the point of becoming like characters in a pantomime.

They confuse “a personality” with “personality”, they make-up a stereotype of an artist rather than being true to their history and letting others judge and decide. They feed us with fiction, while true art is as real as it gets.

True art is about a naked person being shown and exposed; it is a soul being revealed; it is a heart discovered in its most intimate detail.

Salvador Dali

Many have “put on an act”. Dali was brilliant at this. But the key word here is “brilliant”. He built an engaging public persona around his personal quirkiness. And all of this pointed towards two ends. On the one hand his renowned love of money, and secondly it was probably his way of exorcising his own childhood demons.

Did we see the real Dali in action? Probably not, but was it a fake personality or was it based on his very real and eccentric nature and life history.

This was the second son of a family who had lost their first child, also named Salvador, only nine months earlier. He looked so much like his dead brother that his mother suspected that he was actually their previous dead child reborn, and it is believed to have acted accordingly. On top of that, and from all accounts, he was quite the sadist as a child. Even to the point of considering that pleasure and pain were pretty much the same mechanism. He used to attack people for no apparent reason, and it is said that he even threw a dear friend off a bridge “just because” (his friend was badly hurt as a result).

So, was he putting on an act or was the act an embellishment – a mythology of sorts– of his own life story and personality? You can decide if there is a difference between this and the fictional character. But keeping in mind Dali´s story, is then the fictional character many artists envelop themselves with, something wrong?

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Some will argue that, whether truth, embellishment, or pure fiction, in all cases this is just marketing. And if as such it increases your sales, it is ok. And it may well be so. But the fact remains, and my experience corroborates this assumption, that many artists do end up believing they are this phony façade. They end up playing out the character in their real lives, and to a certain level, they end up getting lost in their own concoction.

So what is the point then?

Very simply: Whatever you do, be true to yourself, or at the very least, try your utmost to keep true to yourself. You are an artist. You are someone whom, by definition, will follow what your heart dictates. And that does not mean you cannot work on your own mythology. If you think about it, your life –any life for that matter – is rich and therefore plentiful in “workable material”.

Your beginnings, your family, your place of birth, your life experience, your ideological bents, your personal attributes and your personal agonies. They all have contributed to your present YOU. Your life is the source of your own mythology, and it is also the fountain from which your artistic endeavors spout.

It needs to be put into an attractive order. It needs to become your life PhotoFunia Film Photography Regular 2014-07-30 11 06 14story almost in cinematographic terms. It needs that attractiveness that makes your story something to be consumed, in the good sense, like a good novel. In short, it needs to become a story that people can engage to and become close to, and by doing so, they will begin to know you, and will become closer to you and your art.

There is an old saying in marketing about not falling on the trap of basing your decisions on your own marketing. One thing is what you sell, which necessarily enhances your virtues in detriment of your weaknesses. Something else is believing in your own “enhancements”.

Falling into the trap of that “fictitious character” is part of the learning process. I see many who do fall and never get out of that hole. In the short term it may be fine and it may potentially be profitable as well. But in most cases it will not last. And what is worst, it will take you astray from your true self, which is in the end, where your art is coming from.



©2016 by Ignacio Alperin Bruvera

2014 Art works IN ENGLISH previous works by the same artist Videos Visual Jazz What is Art

A “Hopscotch” between Literature, Art and Jazz

untitled (78)Argentine writer Julio Cortazar was born on a day like this, exactly 100 years ago. All over the world literary buffs and fans are celebrating this new anniversary of his birth with articles and mentions.

A prolific writer and a brilliant story teller, he left his mark in the minds and souls of the many millions who enjoyed his brilliance.

Stories like “Hopscotch” (published in 1963 and probably his most important novel), where the story can change according to the order in which the chapters of the book are read (hence the name), Cronopios and Famas, The final round, The Browl outside, and many more are highlights of his very entertaining, deeply complex, and fascinating works.

Even if you have never read him, you may have enjoyed some of his stories which have been made into movies.225px-Blowup_poster

The best known is, clearly, “Blow-up” (1966), a very successful adaptation of Cortazar´s short story “The Devil´s drool” (1959), directed by Michelangelo Antonioni, and starring David Hemmings, Vanessa Redgrave, and Sarah Miles. While Cortázar’s story “La autopista del sur” (“The Southern Thruway”) influenced another film of the 1960s, Jean-Luc Godard’s Week End (1967).

Cortazar´s love of boxing and Jazz is legendary. While I do not share his love of boxing, I do share his love for Jazz. One of the highlights of “Blow-up”, at least for Cortazar, was the fact that the music was written and performed by such a jazz genius as Herbie Hancock. While “The Pursuer” (1959), a short story that gives its name to a book, is losely based on the life of bebop saxofonist Charly Parker. And his constant musical references, particularly to Jazz, and in lesser extent to “Classical” music (a term that in fact he really detested), do mark his literary production.

Some years ago, a very brave journalist from the Clarin Newspaper in Argentina put me in a bind, when he compared my paintings and my passion for infusing them with the rhythm and musical cadences of Jazz, with what another Argentine, writer Julio Cortazar, had done with the literary presence of this beautiful and free form musical style in all of his writings.

Nota Aislada de la Página 4 _ Page 4 Article by itselfI always felt almost “embarrassed” at this comparison. But on a day like this, I take it as an honor and an important legacy which in my own way, I wish to continue.

Cortazar passed away too early. It was 1984. He was buried in Paris (Montparnasse) where he lived. It was from illness, but many say that the man who always looked 20 years younger than his real age, had suddenly become old and frail from the emptiness that he felt after the passing of Carol Dunlop, from Leukemia, in 1982. She was his second wife and the love of his life.

Like many greatly creative people, all the toughness everyone saw on the outside, was just a shell which protected a highly sensitive and frail soul.

As a homage to this great mind, I would like to share with you this short video prepared by the Juan March Foundation in Spain, in which Cortazar himself talks about the relationship, almost the love affair, he had with Jazz and how it is brought forward in his works.

See you next time!


2014 Art works Design EN ESPAÑOL previous works by the same artist Promoting your Art Videos Visual Jazz

Interview/Entrevista: Derecho al Arte


El artista plástico Ignacio Alperín ha ganado notoriedad a nivel nacional e internacional con su arte movedizo y rítmico, conectado fuertemente al Jazz y a una movida marcadamente personal.

Por Cecilia Tvrdoñ

Cuando uno lee los comentarios sobre la obra del artista plástico Ignacio Alperín, uno nota que expertos y no expertos coinciden en ciertas frases: movimiento, ritmo, cadencia, color. Son todas palabras que buscan relatar de lo que se trata su obra, la cual por su fuerza y estilo tan personal, es difícil de encajonar en referencias clásicas definidas. Es fresca, intuitiva, innovadora y desde ya, muy alejada de lo que uno supondría al escuchar su historia.

PhotoFunia Very Old Telly Regular 2014-07-30 10 30 25¿Cuánto tiempo viviste en el extranjero?

Nací en la Argentina. Pero parte de mi infancia, y toda mi adolescencia y juventud, la viví en Australia, donde también estudié. Los que más me conocen dicen que soy un poquito Aussie. Además de Australia, y por razones laborales de mis padres, pude viajar mucho, e inclusive residir temporariamente en países como Singapur, Malasia, Francia e Italia. Volví a la Argentina en 1990 por curiosidad más que necesidad, y duré poco tiempo. Me “bañé” de realidad y me fui tambaleando como esos boxeadores que entran al ring sin estar preparados.  Di vueltas por Inglaterra, Francia, Italia y retorné al país en 1997.

Finalmente te adaptaste.

No realmente. Pero tal vez ahora estoy como esos boxeadores a los que les pegaron tanto que ya no le importa (risas). En serio, lo que sucede si uno viene de crecer en un país anglosajón y pasa a nuestra cultura, es que hay diferencias fundamentales que cuestan congeniar. Más allá de que cuando volví a la Argentina hablaba castellano con un poco de acento gringo, creo que lo que me pasa tiene que ver con los códigos. Estoy muy feliz en mi país, pero tal vez se entienda si te digo que afuera extrañaba nuestra calidez humana, eso de ser familieros a toda costa (muy tano) y nuestro sentido del humor; mientras que estando acá extraño el respeto por los demás, el sentido de justicia social, y las reglas claras y similares para todos, que son las pautas con las que crecí en Australia.

¿Tu formación es  puramente artística?

Se podría decir que el arte me acompaña desde que nací, ya que vengo de una familia muy abierta al arte y al diseño. Mi madre es una excelente dibujante que dejó de lado su pasión para formar una familia, pero nunca dejó de enseñarnos todo lo que sabía. Mi padre es un ingeniero con una carrera internacional que ha tenido muchos contactos con movimientos de vanguardia, tanto arquitectónicos como artísticos. Por todo ello mi primera formación fue más cercana al dibujo. En Australia, como parte de mi formación general, estudié artes visuales, e hice cursos y talleres. Pero en algún momento decidí encaminar mi propia exploración y allí es donde todavía me encuentro hoy.

¿Te dedicaste siempre al arte?IAB_SELFI1retocada

Pese a que el arte es la gran constante de mi vida, como considero que el ser humano debe responder con acciones a todas las necesidades intelectuales que se presentan (hacer algo con los dones que Dios nos ha dado sería una frase que siempre me inculcaron y que se me viene a la mente ahora) también estudié, entre otras cosas, Derecho, Ciencias Políticas, Relaciones Internacionales, y algo de Economía y Marketing.

Nada que ver con el arte… Sos el abogado pintor.

(Sonríe) Mirá, pinto, en el sentido más formal del concepto, desde los 12 años. Es algo que me ha acompañado siempre. Vendí mi primer cuadro en Australia a los 20 años, lo que marcaría el comienzo de mi carrera profesional de artista. Como también estudié otras profesiones, mi arte debió competir con otras responsabilidades, muchas veces ocupando el lugar de acompañante permanente y bálsamo para el alma. Y desde hace ya más de 10 años, la de artista es mi profesión principal.

¿Nos contás un poco más de tu alter ego profesional?

Para los que me conocen por primera vez, siempre les pregunto si quieren que hable como Bruce Wayne o como Batman (se ríe nuevamente). A simple vista parecen ser actividades muy alejadas entre sí. Pero la realidad es que hay un hilo conductor, y es que en todos yo soy yo. La vida hoy es muy compleja y en términos objetivos, es más larga. Ya la idea de pertenecer a una empresa toda tu vida y retirarte con el reloj de oro, pese a ser muy admirable, es casi imposible. El dinamismo del mercado, los altibajos económicos, y las presiones emocionales ligadas a un mundo donde todo es “ya”, hacen que los cambios laborales y profesionales no sólo sean casi inevitables, sino que hasta podrían considerarse muy sanos porque son como brisas de aire fresco que renuevan el “ambiente interior”. Pero no todo es fantástico. Admitamos que los momentos en los que algo terminó y lo nuevo no termina de concretarse, son momentos duros para todos. Pero creo fervientemente que la solución está casi siempre en nosotros mismos.

Perfecto, pero ¿y  tu vida como Bruce Wayne?

(Se endereza) Tengo que tener el phisique du role para contestar. Estudié y estudio siempre. Tanto profesiones clásicas como en lo relacionado al arte (inclusive estudié teatro). Tengo el extraño honor de ser el primer argentino en la historia de Australia en recibirse de abogado. Hice una práctica en un estudio internacional en Melbourne y de allí me fui directo a trabajar en una empresa. Me desarrollé laboralmente en diferentes empresas y en diferentes países. Llegué a ser Gerente General de una S.A. y de mi propia empresa, Director Ejecutivo del Colegio de Abogados de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires, y Socio Gerente de un estudio extranjero entre otras cosas. Y hoy, en paralelo a mi arte, sigo dando charlas y conferencias sobre los procesos creativos, el arte  y la creatividad en general, enfocado a  empresas, profesionales y artistas. En fin… Muy Bruce Wayne.

Y mientras tanto el arte acechaba…

Yo diría que el arte ha sido y es mi compañero fiel de toda la vida. Dónde iba, mi arte iba conmigo. Y hoy en día es un trabajo full time, de 7 días a la semana.

¿Cómo definirías tu arte?

Si queremos darle un nombre tradicional, mi arte podría encuadrarse dentro de lo expresionista y abstracto. Mis series son generalmente basadas en el jazz particularmente, y en la música en general. Lo de Jazz Visual, o Visual Jazz, que es como se le conoce más popularmente aquí y afuera, responde a la denominación que le dio a mi obra una periodista norteamericana la primera vez que expuse en New York. Y la verdad es que me gustó porque de manera muy sintética, plasma lo que yo trato de generar como artista.

¿Qué tiene de diferente tu trabajo con la música, comparado a lo que hacen otros artistas, muchos de los cuales escuchan música también mientras trabajan?PhotoFunia TV interference Regular 2014-08-03 02 35 54

Yo tengo sinestesia. No es algo malo, y para los que no la conocen, es una condición tan benigna del lóbulo frontal del cerebro que hasta hace algunos años no se podía diagnosticar fehacientemente y a nadie le importaba.
Inclusive hay un porcentaje importante de la población mundial que lo tiene y, algún médico me corregirá, se produce durante el proceso de gestación, dónde cierta característica del lóbulo frontal no se desarrolla o se desarrolla tal vez de otra manera a lo que se consideraría “normal”.
El resultado es que se producen conexiones neuronales fuera de lo común. Por ejemplo, hay personas que cuando escuchan ciertos sonidos se les generan sabores específicos (do es chocolate, re es frutilla… por dar un ejemplo simplificado).
En mi caso, mi sinestesia es leve, pero me permite “ver” formas y colores cuando escucho ciertos sonidos, particularmente música. En particular, encuentro que el Jazz y la música denominada “Clásica” genera los resultados más importantes. Y como amo el Jazz desde pequeño, es mi inspiración principal.

Esta cualidad, ¿estuvo siempre presente en tu obra?

Cuando era un joven artista me resistía a estos impulsos y no los plasmaba en mi obra. Los ignoraba ya que mi educación era más formal, y deseaba lo que muchos deseamos, que es ser aceptado.
Pero con el tiempo me di cuenta que lo que me hacía diferente (no digo original) era el hecho de que mi cerebro pudiese “ver” cosas que otros no veían. La inspiración no llegaba solamente a través de impulsos visuales, o puramente emocionales, sino que también a través de ondas que producía mi cerebro al verse estimulado por el sonido.
Ahí comprendí, que el respetar la “formalidad” le quitaba a mi trabajo, por un lado, esa elusiva característica individual que todos buscamos, y a mi vida de artista el disfrute de crear de una manera que me hacía verdaderamente feliz.
Y así fue como comencé, de a poco, a experimentar lo que hoy ya es una característica de mi obra. Logré así unir mi impronta, y mi capacidad de trabajo, con las posibilidades que este don me genera, y encontré la manera de fusionarlos y aprovecharlos artísticamente.

PhotoFunia Animator Regular 2014-07-30 12 49 27Y se nota en la vitalidad, los movimientos y el ritmo que hay en tu obra.

Esa “visión” de movimientos, formas y colores creo que hoy se plasman claramente en mi trabajo pese a ser marcadamente abstracto. Si no me equivoco, el comentario que más he escuchado sobre mi obra, sea de expertos (artistas, curadores, etc) como del público en general, es que se ven plasmados los ritmos, los movimientos, y las cadencias de la música de manera muy clara.
Me ha llevado años, pero igualmente, me hace muy feliz escucharlo.

Tal vez la reputación de tu obra ya me esté dando la respuesta, pero ¿encontrás que la obra abstracta es aceptada y valorada en nuestro país como en el extranjero?

Creo que la obra abstracta tiene su mercado en todo el mundo. La abstracción pictórica existe desde principios del siglo XX y va a seguir existiendo. Y sinceramente, tampoco creo que sea un problema que haya personas a las que no les guste la abstracción. Es más, están en todo su derecho. Y creo que es un tema que no pasa necesariamente por la educación, aunque comprenderla seguramente allana el camino para disfrutarla. Más bien intuyo que en general es un tema de gustos.
Igualmente te cuento que en la Argentina las obras abstractas tienen muchos adeptos, particularmente entre los coleccionistas de mediana edad y jóvenes, y eso claramente es muy bueno.

¿Manejás tu obra de manera personal?

El mercado del arte es muy complejo. Creo haber tenido la suerte de que mi obra haya sido resaltada en medios nacionales y extranjeros. Eso es fantástico desde el punto de vista de la validación externa que necesita el público que se acerca a la obra. Algunos curadores recomiendan mi obra y eso también es muy bueno. Pero no lo es todo.
Participo de eventos y ferias, generalmente por invitación, y elijo dónde participar. La elección no se basa en la fama de la feria o muestra necesariamente, pero en lo que en el momento también pueda resultar beneficioso para mi arte. Eso sí, nunca le digo que no a los eventos a beneficio.
También mantengo mi  presencia a través de mi Sitio personal; de mi Blog; de un grupo, una Fan Page y una página personal en Facebook; de presencia en LinkedIn donde contribuyo con artículos en 7 grupos de arte. Tengo una substancial masa de seguidores en Twitter también, y todo ello requiere de tiempo y planificación.
Siempre que uno habla de la Red pareciera ser que no requiere trabajo. Se publica y listo. Pero creo que con lo que acabo de contar queda claro que, por un lado, promocionarse por Internet es un trabajo como como cualquier otro y requiere de tiempo, constancia y cierta precisión. Y la pata tradicional también lleva tiempo y esfuerzos.
Recordemos que además de todo eso, pinto, planifico, trabajo en mis objetos y diseños, y coordino la representación de mis obras. Es realmente un trabajo full-time.


Proyectos y realidades siempre. Hoy, en paralelo a mi arte, sigo dando charlas y conferencias sobre los procesos creativos, el arte  y la creatividad en general, enfocado a  empresas, profesionales y artistas.  No soy de los que anuncian sus proyectos futuros con asiduidad. Siento que la presión positiva que se genera al trabajar silenciosamente, pese a las ganas de contarlo a los cuatro vientos, es muy frágil. Se disipa fácilmente si uno genera expectativas y “desinfla” esa presión interior. Digamos simplemente que creo en el futuro, mío y en el del país, y estoy apostando para que podamos hacer grandes cosas juntos.

Si querés ver a Ignacio Alperín en acción, mirá la nota en YouTube, en el canal arteztvfull o bien  en la fan page Artez Teve  Programa de Televisión.

2014 Art works IN ENGLISH previous works by the same artist Promoting your Art Visual Jazz

The Art of Pricing

Pricing art is not an easy task. Everyone has a story to tell, an issue to contend with, or even an encounter with an unscrupulous individual to remember.

Emerging artists feel that is impossible to set a reasonable price. They are happy when they sell, but they also think it is unfair what they get for their art (more often than not, managing to barely cover the costs of materials but not their artistic work). When they go to fairs or those who are lucky enough to be contacted by galleries, they have to pay just to be there and if they sell, they can see that anywhere between 10% and 50% of the price will end-up elsewhere.

It is better for established artists. Even though costs remain high, and commissions more so. Yet the construction of a solid price for an artist´s work is, generally speaking, a complex and time consuming task even for someone with a history of good strong sales.

Serious galleries, curators, and a variety of experts, make appraisals. But appraisals can also be wrong. Particularly when an artist´s work is just beginning to see the light. The word appraisal in itself has a diffuse meaning. As it is based on past performance (if it exists), on objective and subjective values, and on projections of current and future value. Very difficult in itself, and even more so if the artist is not that well known.

I want to tell you a little bit about my own story, and what I have learned so far. Maybe my experience will be of use. I can happily say that prices for my art have grown exponentially in the last few years, and this has to do with a series of steps I have taken, added to a complex equation that I have worked out over time.

But before I get to that, it may be good to start by delving a little into the past, so we can set the scene.How High the Moon Series #2 (2012) 78cm x 78cm

As many of you may already be familiar with, I have been working for a long time on what I call “Visual Jazz”. This is a combination of my brain´s response to music (I am synesthetic, just like Kandinsky, another artist who also interlaced his art and his “gift”) and I work particularly with jazz. Thus the name.

I remember when I first started exhibiting my new work more openly, I came across a great deal of resistance, mostly because the infusion of color and movement that I constantly explore through my series was not the “in thing” at the time.

Not only was I not getting the prices I hoped, I was also getting the cold shoulder from many curators and critics as they found my art, and my way of expressing it, either unattractive or in some cases, not conceptual enough.

It was almost impossible to get a review, while art competitions would just shun me out, and people would look at it with an expression of “I just don’t understand it”.

Until one day a journalist decided fortuitously (the luck factor) that my work should be used as the “differential” in an article she wrote on the new artistic trends that were coming from South America. This was as part of a review she did on a group exhibition (I was just one of the artists) that was being held at a Gallery, in Chelsea, NY. A Gallery which happened to be, or at least that is how I felt, the only one prepared to open its walls to my art.

I never met the journalist. I still don’t know how she placed my “Visual Jazz” in the midst of a “trend” as I was mostly (truly) lonely and on my own, just trying to get my work noticed. But in any case, she noticed. And that is the important point.

I remember even feeling a little lost at the South American branding. I was born in Argentina and mostly reside there these days, but I grew up in Australia and lived in many countries before settling back, so I always felt a bit out of place. I even feel that my art is a little more universal than the general local art, which has a tendency to be more self-referential.

But in any case, I was obviously not going to argue with it. Quite the contrary, I embraced it.

This first validating article gave me a little push. Soon major newspapers started briefly mentioning my “Visual Jazz” as something different to see. As my work began to grow and the pieces started multiplying. The sheer volume and, hopefully, the quality of work began to change minds. One thing is to see 1 or 2 pieces, something else is to see 50.

When you have good volumen of work, the public and the critics hopefully begin to notice where you are going with your art. As with most abstractions, they may also find their brains slowly accommodating to the different paradigms which are being proposed. And suddenly, the fact that they did not understand it before, becomes less important than the fact that they unexpectedly seem to be enjoying the aesthetics of it. And out of the blue (or red, or yellow, or green), one day they do understand. One day they finally “see it”.

And so, as approval began to grow, prices also began to rise.

Even now I am at the threshold and not even close to my ceiling. Hopefully I will never know what my work’s value ceiling is, or at least that is what I hope.

Yet, as I look back and try to extract reasonable advice that can apply to everybody’s work, I see certain common threads related to all the work done to generate value. And I feel, and hope, that these simple points (and I mean simple, not easy) will take you far:

1. There is no replacing quality, ingenuity, emotion, and hard work.PhotoFunia TV interference Regular 2014-08-03 02 24 32

2. Furthermore, there is no replacing YOU in your work. YOU are the original. It is just a matter of letting YOU into your art.

3. Luck is a factor in your success. But luck doesn’t walk around looking for your door. You have to be “out there” (whatever your “out there” may be) so luck can find you.

4. You may start with a price that reasonably represents the amount of work & artistic effort that went into your piece. But Price is value, and value is a construction. Put a brick at a time. Like my father used to say (he is an engineer), “You cannot start a beautiful building from the top floor. First you have to get your hands dirty and dig”.

5. Don´t expect a set value. Don´t expect your prices to be maintained if you don´t respect them. Be flexible & sensible, but defend the value you have created so far.

6. Price/Value is something that you build with your buyers. Make them part of your project. Get them to defend their investment as much as you defend your price. Then you may have something.

7. Be responsive to your public and let your art go. In other words, sell when the opportunity arises!PhotoFunia New World Regular 2014-08-03 10 24 01_edited

8. Your work is your best ad, but the ad must be published somewhere in order to work, so make sure that your art is hanging somewhere far away from you, & where it can keep getting YOU to new audiences.

9. Learn to be intellectually alert about your art. Study, become your art´s own encyclopedia, learn to explain your motivations in ways that engages those who listen to you. Explain the complexities of your work in terms that people can understand, but also admire. Read and explore the history of art. Look at those who came before you. Learn, learn, and learn. And above all, be sincere about your motivations. This simple exercise creates value.

10. Do not confuse being intellectually alert with conceptualizing your work. “Concept” in art has become very important because it is of great help to curators, critics, and agents. Amongst other things, because it helps them write and talk about your art.  But it is not your art. At most, let the concept “explain” (for others) and “guide” (for you), but never “dictate”.


And now to my magic equation, which is:

(My end work) x (My effort) x (my time) x (My creativity) x (My costs) = $0 (zero)

Yes. It is that sad. But don´t lose hope. It is a stepping stone and I will explain why.

For a start. There is no better place to base your pricing strategy than in reality.

Getting the right price is understanding that your work is worth a lot to you. It may be beautiful, extraordinary, and it may even represent a brand new branch of the arts, but all that value is only felt by you and those who love you.

When you look at the market value (a different kettle of fish altogether), your work (my work for that matter) is worth zero, zilch, nada….until someone is prepared to pay something for it.PhotoFunia Animator Regular 2014-07-30 11 15 34

It is worth more when 2 or more are willing to do that, and the sky is the limit once people move in numbers to pay for your work. At that point you may increase what you ask for your work, and the market will probably respond (in my experience) positively because everybody loves a winner, and everybody wants to make a great deal (in art, the great deal is that your work is cheaper now than later). The best news is that the incrementals may be limitless.

When you pretend that your prices mimic your love for what you do, you will fall flat on your face. More so if you don’t do the “work” (I refer you back to my 10 points). Because the market is many things, but mostly, it is absolutely heartless.

But if you can engage your market both emotionally and intellectually, it may ultimately respond, and at that point, you may have a winner.

That is why it is so important to work towards increasing the value of your work by giving it meaning, by promotion, by your own intellectual attractiveness in describing what you do, how you do it, and why you do it. Basically letting your uniqueness come through your art.

The rest is up to your talent (and yes, a little bit of luck).





2013 Art works 2013 Exhibitions 2014 Art works Design Exhibitions IN ENGLISH previous works by the same artist Uncategorized Videos Visual Jazz

A look back at my Crystal Coffee table (a le Crayons)

In 2013 I had the pleasure of participating in the 20th anniversaty celebrations of Buenos Aires famous Buenos Aires Design Shopping Mall. As part of these events I took part in Art Deco, an exhibition of furniture intervened by artists, where I presented my “Crystal Coffee Table (a le crayons).


Besides having the piece covered by BA´s largest newspapers, I wrote a couple of articles on it and I invite you to check them out. The most recent being “Art, Suit and Tie” ( ).

Yet it took me a whole year to return to it and prepare a short video showing the photographs I had taken as I built it. A behind the scenes look, if you wish, on the work I had done.

Even though it does not show the process that went into thinking of it, planning it and any of the other details, I think it shows the complexity and at the same time, simplicity, of preparing this piece.

It also shows how the artistic object changes dramatically as it gets introduced in the cristal table which if anything, is bland and quite non specific.

There is a before and an after on the piece, and the video makes it very clear how the combination of two apparently unconnected ítems generates something new and much more powerful. They generate a completely new object of design, useful and at the same time, artistic

I hope you enjoy it.

See you next time!


2008 art works 2009 art works 2010 art works 2011 art works 2011 Exhibitions 2012 art works 2013 Art works 2013 Exhibitions Design Exhibitions IN ENGLISH Visual Jazz

Ñ, that weird little letter which may well define the Spanish language, and its role in an undefined coffee table

logo enieThe most popular and competing Western languages in the world are English and Spanish.

For the Spanish speaker, the letter Ñ (roughly pronounced N-ee-A ) is like a symbol of this language´s uniqueness.

In Argentina, the top selling literature, arts and culture magazine, edited by CLARIN (the country´s most popular and largest selling newspaper) is properly called simply “Ñ”.

Yes, just a letter, but one that is the symbol of a whole language.IAB_PAG_6_Ñ_25MAYO2013

This magazine is published every Saturday and has average weekly sales of approximately 80,000 copies. Ñ, together with the LA NACION´s newspaper ADN (DNA in Spanish, and a different and perhaps more modern way of asserting where its cultural roots are), are the 2 most popular cultural magazines in the country.

I have been privileged enough to have been featured in both at different times, and it is always a proud moment when I can see my work reproduced in such prestigious and popular publications, and particularly when I find myself surrounded by articles on truly amazing local and international artists.

Last Saturday (May 25th ) I was surprised to find my latest intervention, and what has become so far this year´s one of my most popular works (my “Crystal coffee table with color pencils”), being featured on page 6.

renieIt is always fun to see how a writer approaches a piece of work. I still remember a short article in the same magazine a couple of years ago, in which a journalist with immense generosity, compared and intertwined my work in my “Visual Jazz Series” with Julio Cortazar´s writings and his love for Jazz (for an explanation of how my art and music are interconnected, and particularly Jazz, check out “Jazz means freedom” at  ).

This time the reporter took a more clinical approach, which oddly enough I feel it is the right way to look at the piece.

First of all, because only a live viewing will reveal a certain depth and 3 dimensionality, that cannot be explained through a photograph. Secondly, because the piece is intriguing and that fuzziness is better left for the viewer to unravel, rather than subject it to an explanation that can only partially encompass all that it has to offer.


And I can only invite you, if you can, to have a look at it live at the Buenos Aires Design Shopping Mall, where it will be on show for a little while longer. And if you can´t, do not worry, at the very least I have some great pictures from the great Fabian Cañás which I have published here previously and on Facebook for you to look at and enjoy. I hope you do.

Until the next time.




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2008 art works 2009 art works 2010 art works 2011 art works 2011 Exhibitions 2012 art works 2013 Art works 2013 Exhibitions Design Exhibitions IN ENGLISH Visual Jazz


As everyone who knows me  ( knows, I am a maker of art and a lover of both art and music, particularly jazz and all its variations.

I have always endeavored to put both artistic forms of expression together, looking to synthesize them into new creations.iab_suit&tie

I have managed to do my own thing, but my love for the works of great geniouses like Kandinsky, Picasso, Van Koenig, Rauschenberg, and Pollock amongst others, will show through.

In music, even though my tastes are usually expressed in terms of the great bebop and hard bop masters like Evans, Coltrane, Monk, Davis, Pepper, Bird, and the golden era of American voices like Ella, Sinatra, Bennett, Dinah Washington, and Nina Simone, I am quite eclectic. I love classical music, tango, blues, soul, hip-hop and I can find inspiration in almost any tune that I enjoy, no matter its style.

Like I always say, music deserves a great deal of the credit in my art. “Inspiration is easy to find when you are perched on the shoulders of genius” is my usual response. 

As I slowly entered into the realm of object design and sculpture, music was also there to inspire me, to make me “see”.


As many of you have seen, I recently introduced my latest piece at Art Deco, an Exhibition of intervened objects by well known Argentine artists, which took place at the Recoleta district in Buenos Aires in late April.

My design is quite simple. An all crystal coffee table within which, just like a transparent jewel box, In which I placed a sculptural piece made up of more than 1800 Faber-Castell Goldfaber artistic pencils standing perpendicularly and making up a colorful and airy version of the painting that lurches beneath.

 It strikes me that every person, whether young or old, who has stood in front of the finished table ends up drawing out a big and happy smile. The color pencils create a link to something very familiar, something warm within each one of us, and initiate the communication with the viewer immediately.

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The idea of using pencils for this intervention came to me as I watched a Tony Bennett documentary a while back. I already had the crystal table and listening to that genius sing made me close my eyes, and suddenly I saw it. It was like a clear box full of candy, the idea of the beautiful color pencils used as objects d’art instead as of instruments was born. I know others have explored this avenue, but I think I have managed to make it both artistic and utilitarian, with a cool twist. I am happy with the results and with the reaction of the public. It has been a wonderful experience.

And to me, it is important that my art also has that COOL factor. It is a style and it is a message. Art is not something rigid, stuck somewhere in an impregnable limbo. It is something to be enjoyed. My art is a message of fredom and cool, for all to enjoy, in any way they wish to enjoy it.

And of course, preferably at home, after acquiring it!!!  🙂

And talking about cool, enjoy the images of my latest work while you listen to  the new 60’s Jazz scene B&W video of Justin Timberlake’s latest (featuring Jay Z). It seems that JT, just like me, also likes doing his thing with a Suit & Tie.

Until the next time!



Art and Design: Ignacio Alperin Bruvera 

Photos: Fabian Cañas.

Painting accompanying the table in photos: “Let´s get away from it all” (2012) by Ignacio Alperin Bruvera, 100cm x 100cm.

Let´s get away from it all 100x100 (2012)

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