By Jared Whitlock.
Slowing down to speed up — that’s Santos Orellana’s paradoxical goal, which he explores in his latest collection “At 74 Beats Per Minute.”
Santos explained that as his career becomes more demanding, it’s getting tougher and tougher to appreciate what’s important to him. So he’s now intent on slowing down and going at his own pace, bringing clarity, efficiency and thus greater productivity to challenges awaiting him — as counterintuitive as that may seem. The mindset also lends itself to a zest for life.
“It’s the struggle of how do I do more, or at least go at the same rate, but slow down my outlook so that I can enjoy basic things like my kids growing up. It’s doing everything possible to avoid being a slave to the fast-paced way things are moving, which comes with success.”
Santos didn’t set out to capture this time paradox, nor did he even plan a collection. As is often the case, something was gnawing at his subconscious. So last month, he dropped everything and painted.
“Painting settles me. I realize, ‘OK, I’m now aware of these thoughts that were lingering in my head’.”
This 19-piece collection marks a new chapter in Santos’s long-running theme of making the most of what little time we have. But why the name “74 Beats Per Minute?” That’s the tempo of many roots reggae songs — it’s a rate that Santos moves at, his sweet spot.
“While I like everything from Salsa to Rock ‘n’ Roll, my heart beats to reggae. That’s a place I want to stay no matter what’s happening around me.”
Santos used aerosol, acrylic and paint marker on mat board for the collection. Each piece is custom framed to 11 by 14 inches.