Roy Cruz headshot

Photo credit: Michael Hirabayashi

As an artist, I am fascinated with movement. I’ve always been enamored with dance: be it modern, ballet or hip hop. Growing up in the 70’s, the dancers on television executing Bob Fosse choreography wearing flowing and colorful Bob Mackie costumes introduced me to an ephemeral levity that I always wanted to frame. The 1984 music video of Chaka Khan’s “I Feel For You” that featured Norma Kamali’s oversized jackets and stretched jersey, showed me wardrobe flowed as if another part of the body, and governed by the dancers’ muscles. In the 90’s, Madonna’s “Human Nature” video in which the dancers moved in restrictive cubicles, the narrative was an exploration of bondage yet watching it felt liberating. I see dancers as an amalgamation of random shapes that cling, adapt and mutate with one another, in search for a path to freedom.

I don’t do outline; I freestyle the strokes. The canvas or the paper is an empty dance floor. I begin with a streamlined shape, adding swooshes that emulates the contour of the previous shape. I’m red and green color blind, I don’t plan the colors. I just work with the palette in front of me and just let the energy take over. As I rotate the canvas or the paper, random images (it could be a warrior, a dog, sword, etc.), are
conjured, that’s when I know art is progressing on its own.

Born and Raised in the Philippines, Roy Cruz is also an actor, storyteller and a writer.
He resides in Los Angeles.