Larry Madrigal, Annunciation, 2023
Larry Madrigal: Already, Not Yet
Oct 14 – Nov 11, 2023
Nicodim Gallery
Bucharest, Romania

Already, Not Yet, the title of Larry Madrigal’s fourth solo exhibition with Nicodim, is a mantra the artist returned to throughout the creation of this body of work. In Madrigal’s words, “this phrase captures the idea that I currently possess everything I need to flourish within [myself], however, I am still in a process of growing and becoming.” Madrigal is interested in the everchanging, incompleteness of every given moment, while also recognizing how this state of flux can be totally sufficient for personal contentment. As he mentions, “I can simultaneously act in the ‘not yet’ and rest in the ‘already.’”

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In contrast to this is a cynicism inherent to parenthood, aging, and suburban life that Madrigal has learned to live with. Dwelling in the tension between these two poles allows the artist to break open existential questions that are familiar to all parents, regardless of context – namely, is it possible to engage in the world with childhood optimism after so much human failure, especially our own? Within the last year in particular, the veil of cynicism has been a wrestling point for Madrigal, and these paintings were a way for him to see his immediate context through a different lens. As a mechanism for survival, and certainly in service to his children, family, and community, Madrigal dwells in the shimmering, ineffable qualities of existence, knowing that no matter where he chooses to live, he and his family will never be void of awe. A romantic at heart living a practical lifestyle in the suburbs, Madrigal ignites routine elements of daily life like an anthropologist. By doing so in a way that legitimizes our relationship to normalcy and elevating it with an air of sophistication and urgency, Madrigal underscores universal anxieties about parenthood, banality, and the nature of complacency. In his words, “At the end of the day, no matter where I am, I am still in this mysterious, amazing endeavor. So who’s to say that what’s happening thirteen billion lightyears away is any more beautiful than doing the dishes?”