A nationally recognized artist, Cuban-born Noel Suarez has been commissioned by both public and private organizations, including New York’s AIDS Relief Fund, the City of Miami Beach and Absolut Vodka. He has been featured in The European Library of Artists’ 100 Contemporary Artists of the World. Noel’s work is recognized by broad bold strokes, a surging energy of color and by the carefully crafted anatomy of his figures. His cubist style is an amalgam of structure and dreams, reality and mythology, the sensual and the divine. Collectively, the tapestry of his work creates an artistic uniqueness that is characteristic of all great artists.
Below, read on to discover Noel’s inspiration, what his workshops are all about and more.
How did you become a painter?
I was forced to retire from ballet due to a knee injury just weeks before my 30th birthday. I had to be in bed for six months and after a year of major physical therapies, I was able to use my right leg again. So my second passion – drawing and painting – was my only way to disconnect from the pain and intensity I experienced. It was the best therapy on many levels, and without realizing it, my career as a painter emerged.
What is the inspiration behind your work?
Being born in a family of artists, I was introduced to all arts at an early age. Although my first passion was ballet, it was my grandmother that took me to museums, introduced me to her painter friends and got me to join the San Alejandro Painting Academy in Havana. Growing up in the theatre and traveling the world from a very early age expanded my need to draw and paint.
Tell us about your workshops in the Artist Loft – what do you focus on?
My main focus is to ensure that everyone has an amazing experience that allows them to understand how exciting and fulfilling the creative process can be. I create a different workshop for every voyage. From the beginning, each class allows the guest to progress – by the end of the journey everyone has created their own beautiful “masterpiece.” I love seeing guests from previous voyages come back again and again.
What are some of your new projects?
My workshops are inspired by the projects and collections that I’m working on for my upcoming exhibits and events. While on board I also work on these projects, which offers our guests the opportunity to acquire pieces created exclusively on board Oceania Cruises. I just finished my new bronze sculpture and I’m preparing for my 2016 exhibits that will premiere in June – first in Miami and later in Orlando and St. Petersburg and other cities in the US, as well as Puerto Rico and Barcelona. I’m also working on a new, exciting project for Miami’s Art Basel 2016.
What’s your dream destination or voyage?
Both of my careers as a dancer and as an artist have given me the opportunity to travel the world extensively. Although I love and appreciate every country and city, I have to say that my favorite destinations are the cities in the Mediterranean, Aegean and Adriatic seas. I will never grow tired of visiting this part of the world.