Stretched work in collaged leather, embroidered with a figure of a statue and a red rose

Esteban Ramón Pérez

Working primarily with leather, Esteban Ramón Pérez creates objects that place painting in dialogue with textiles and sculpture, expanding the way we might consider the history and possibilities of the medium. After disavowing painting for some time, the artist eventually returned to it through leather, which he had grown up around in his father’s upholstery shop and which allowed him to rethink the terms of abstract painting through the long history of craft and everyday use carried within this material. Pérez sews together scraps of leather salvaged from various custom upholstery shops and elsewhere to make largely monochromatic works that hang like tapestries or are stretched taut over handmade frames. He embellishes the surfaces of these works with a visual collage of embroidered, etched, and scarred iconography. He avoids singular images and direct representation in his works, instead embedding a complex visual language that embodies diasporic, indigenous, and popular knowledge into his materials.


Esteban Ramón Pérez (b. 1989, Los Angeles) received a BFA from California Institute of the Arts in 2017 and an MFA from Yale School of Art in 2019. His work has been shown in solo exhibitions at Rebecca Camacho Presents, San Francisco (2023); Staniar Gallery, Washington and Lee University, Lexington, Virginia (2022); Charles Moffett, New York (2022); and Calderón, New York (2021). Recent group presentations include those at Russell Hill Rogers Galleries, University of Texas, San Antonio (2023); Jenkins Johnson Gallery, Brooklyn (2023, 2021); K11 Musea, Hong Kong (2022); 1883 E Alejo, Palm Springs (2022); Lehmann Maupin, New York (2022); Japanese American Cultural & Community Center, Los Angeles (2022); the Mistake Room, Los Angeles (2022); Arlington Arts Center, Virginia (2022); Gamma Galería, Guadalajara (2021); James Cohan Gallery, New York (2021); Transmitter, Brooklyn (2021); and Eastern Connecticut State University Art Gallery, Windham (2020). He is a recipient of the Artadia Award (2022) and NXTHVN Studio Fellowship (2020).