An energetic art | VailDaily.com

An energetic art

Wren Bova
wbova@vaildaily.com

As a tumble of colorful, jersey-clad cyclists pummel the streets of Vail Village and Vail Pass during the Colorado Classic, an energetic, color-smitten David V. Gonzales will be celebrating cycling by live-painting at the event's Expo. The artist behind the Classic's official poster, Gonzales is represented by Raitman Art Galleries, and can be found at the gallery's booth Thursday, Aug. 16, and Friday, Aug. 17.

Gonzales paints with a signature flurry of color and movement. He's drawn to athletic subjects.

"I like sports in general. Pushing the body to those types of feats — it's pretty remarkable what the human body can do," he said. "As for the composition, I love depicting the race when it's toward the end and they're just pouring their guts over the asphalt, they're riding their hearts out."

'I love cycling'

Gonzales doesn't own a car and commutes via bike, so the topic is a fitting one. But it's possible his connection to cycling pre-dates even his ability to ride a bike. As a baby, he was with his parents in Germany. They were at a church on top of a hill, and while his parents turned their attention to the surroundings, Gonzales' stroller took off down the hill.

"They were a mess, trying to chase me down," he said. "And out of nowhere this guy on a bike stops me from being slammed by a truck by oncoming traffic. And then he disappeared before my parents could even thank him. So, no wonder I don't own a car. I love cycling, and it's a way to give back to the guy who saved my life."

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A former window painter, Gonzales is used to painting in front of people. In the studio he can get pretty wild, letting the paint fly — a tendency he curbs when painting in public.

"I love that feeling of being in that flow, in that place where everything is clicking together," he said. "In the studio I'm bouncing around, moving around, stretching around — painting is almost like an athletic event for me."

It's also filled with color. The artist embraces pure color, and rarely mixes them. But he does layer color on top of color, filling his canvases with a blur of action and feeling.

The official poster, signed by Gonzales, will be available at the Colorado Classic's merchant tent, as well as at the Raitman Art Galleries booth, where they'll also have some of the artist's high-quality metal prints. Come visit the artist and watch as he completes "In the Trenches," works on a commission of cyclists racing through the Tetons and paints other canvasses as well.

For more information on the artist, visit http://www.raitmanart.com.