By Jordyn Horton
Joao Paulo Goncalves is an artist from Pompano Beach, Florida. Goncalves’s ArtPrize entry is titled “Portraits of Light and Shadow,” and was on exhibit in the DeVos Place Convention Center.
Goncalves’s entry was announced as a top 20 finalist in the public vote, as well as a finalist in the 2-D category. His entry is a collection of three portraits. One portrait is of Martin Luther King Jr., another portrait is of Mona Lisa, and the final portrait is of the Girl with the Pearl Earring. Goncalves said his pieces are named after the person or the work that he’s representing.
Goncalves explained the initial process in creating each piece.
“I have a photograph that I follow that I made into grids, kind of like a pixelated image, and from that moment on I have a room with no light and I put the pieces on,” Goncalves said. “I start seeing what color they look so I’m creating values for each angle.”
Goncalves’s portraits are made out of two by four pieces of wood, that he cuts into little pieces.
“I just cut it into little pieces and the little pieces have different angles, and that’s what’s going to create the different shades you see,” Goncalves said.
The entry took Goncalves 430 hours overall, with the last piece, “Girl with the Pearl Earring,” taking 200 hours itself.
Goncalves said he may sell his three portraits once ArtPrize is finished.
“I got an offer from the museum, the Ripley’s Believe It or Not, so they might buy the pieces,” Goncalves said. “So, if it goes through and actually that happens, that’s their new home.”