Canadian artist Rob Gonsalves (July 10, 1959 – June 14, 2017) began his career as a full-time fine artist in 1990 at the Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition, after much enthusiasm by the viewing public. Previously, he was a full-time architect and painted trompe-l'œil murals and theatre sets. In addition to shows, exhibitions, and limited edition prints, his paintings have appeared in four children’s picture books — Imagine a Night, Imagine a Day, Imagine a Place, and Imagine a World — and many calendars, all a pure joy to sit back, relax, and have much fun with. He was influenced by Magritte, Escher, and Varo, to name three artists.
‘Magic Realism’ or ‘Magical Realism’ is a term used to describe his genre of painting. And that is precisely what his paintings are — magical!
Magical because of the masterful and brilliant illusions they strike the viewers with. Magical because they convey child-like innocence, now rarely seen and rarely experienced in our dark society. (As examples, consider all the violent and dark and evil artwork and movies and music throughout the world.) Magical because of their playful and youthful character and atmosphere. Magical because they nearly make viewers believe in the impossible. Magical because of their great sense of wonder and adventure and risk and triumph.
Well, you get the picture as only Gonsalves could paint it — My apologies if someone has already claimed copyright of this sentence, as I’m sure it has been written before.
I had the great pleasure of chatting with Rob a number of times here in Toronto, where he was born, raised, and lived for some time.
Very sadly, he passed away at the age of 57.