ARTIST TALK: Rafael Francisco Salas
Presented in partnership with Hispanic Heritage Month
About the Artist
Rafael Francisco Salas is a Wisconsin-based artist. He combines landscape, the legacy of portraiture, architecture, and country music into artwork that evokes a strange, rural poetry. It reflects a personal journey of mixed race identity, conflict, beauty and devotion played out on the vast landscapes of rural Wisconsin.
His work has been exhibited in New York City, San Diego, Boston, as well as many venues in the Midwest including The Neville Public Museum, The Museum of Wisconsin Art, The John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Dean Jensen gallery, Circa Gallery and Frank Juarez Gallery. His work is represented by Portrait Society Gallery in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Salas has also worked as an art critic for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Newcity Art in Chicago and Urban Milwaukee. Salas is a professor of art at Ripon College in Ripon, WI.
From the Artist
My artwork reflects on American tradition and identity. It speaks to an indignant desire for a dream continually just beyond reach. It is a strange, rural poetry of aspiration and poignant reality, a striver’s endeavor of high and low culture, situated between the elevated and the abject.
Country music is the appropriate soundtrack.