Joan Belmar
Since 2002
Works in Washington D.C. Uruguay

Joan (Joe-on) Belmar was born in Santiago, Chile in 1970. He left Chile for Spain, at the age of 24, where he began painting professionally, using the Catalan name Joan for his first name John. He came to Washington, D.C. in 1999, and was granted permanent residency in the U.S. based on extraordinary artistic merit in 2003, and has since become a citizen.
 Belmar's works reflect his interest how the mind processes the passage of time. His 3-D paintings are created by using strips of Mylar and Vinyl to build space and layers inside the painting. The sheerness of the Mylar captures and reflects light and encourages up-close viewing of the work, which reveals the various depths that have been created.
Belmar was a Mayor's Award Finalist in 2007 as an outstanding emerging artist in Washington, D.C.The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities awarded him an artist fellowship grant in 2009. In 2010, the Maryland Arts Council awarded him an Individual Artist grant in Visual Arts: Painting. And in 2011, the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County gave him an Individual Artist Grant.
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By Mark Jenkins, Published: November 1
The Washington Post

The “America” paintings and a more recent series, “Tierra del Fuego,” are making their debut at Charles Krause/Reporting Fine Art. The newer work can be seen as more pointed, since it’s about the destruction of an indigenous people, the Selk’nam, who lived on the southern island divided between Chile and Argentina. Working from photographs taken in the 1920s, Belmar takes the dots and lines of the tribe’s body paint as visual motifs in paintings that (like the earlier ones) are mainly nonrepresentational. The artist boldly contrasts strong, clean black forms with areas of mottled, dripped tan and brown, evoking both the Selk’nam and the land where they once lived. Such pieces as “Reforma #1” are evocative but also powerful as sheer design.


Joan Belmar

Tierra del Fuego Series 2012
Charles Krause Reporting Fine Art


J Belmar

My world is internal. My experiences, feelings, and senses have a life of their own inside me.
I experience life very intensely. My art offers others a window into my internal world.
My internal world and, accordingly, my art is filled with colors, shadows,
transparencies, three-dimentionality, and opptical effects.

One objective of my work is to play with the multiple possibilities of materials and concepts.
I often use circular and curved shapes, as well as calligraphy. For me, the "circle with a center"
pattern is the basic structure of creation. It is reflected in both the micro and the macro world.
I have lived in many worlds and the caligraphy helps me to express that. The caligraphy
in my work is spontaneous, ironical, and not literal, even though there are some symbols that
are influenced by cartoons and comics.

As an artist, I am gratified when viewers are absorbed and bewildered by the color, depth,
and three-dimentionality of my work. Once my piece is framed, I love it when a finger fights the urge to
touch the surface, only to crash against the reality of the glass.