Joan Cornella is a Barcelonean artist illustrator and a cartoonist, well-known for his dark and quirky humor, often described as disturbing and outrageous. With his own visual code, which is minimalist and unusual, Joan Cornellà uses satire to denounce the grim and dark part of human nature. He raises awareness of our hypocrisy and our obsession with many topics of our everyday lives. The colors of the sets and the perturbing stillness of his characters remind the spectator of the 1950’s advertisements, however, a morbid atmosphere hides behind this happy, yet cynical, faces. Cornellà does not hesitate to mock taboos. His artworks are bold and direct and describe our daily routine scenes. Since no topic is “off limit” for Joan, some people might feel offended by his work, but once the viewer gets deepen into his cynical and direct approach the appreciation grows exponentially.
“Keep it Real!” is an anthological exhibition that aims to present the unique dark and unsettling irony of the internationally renowned Catalan artist and cartoonist. Back to New York for the second time (and the first time in two years), his bold and direct message is sharply addressed through a very recognizable, naive and simplistic, visual style, that tends to soften the very delicate themes debated. With no shame or fear to offend the viewer, Cornella’ insists in depicting surreal macabre situations, always strongly connected with the latest society issues, where the characters cynically, but always cheerfully, do what should never be done. With his approach the artist attempt to unsettle the status quo in the art world, primarily by referencing contemporary social conditions and sensibilities on a global scale, trying to show the essence of our current culture.