Taking an ordinary phone book, Alex Queral carves a face into this object of so many faceless names. With the book, a very sharp X-ACTO® knife, a little pot of acrylic medium to set detail areas and a great deal of talent, Queral literally peels away the pages like the skin of an onion to reveal the portrait within. Once the carving is complete, he will often apply a black wash to enhance the features and then seal the entire book with acrylic to preserve the work. However, he never loses the line registration; and the book remains quite pliable.
Alex Queral was born in Havana, Cuba in 1958. His family migrated to Mexico and then to Miami, Florida when he was a young boy. He received a B.F.A. from the University of Washington, Seattle and a M.F.A. from the University of Pennsylvania. His works have been exhibited in Canada, England, Mexico and throughout the U.S. and are in the collections of Ripley's Believe It or Not!®, as well as Jerry Speyer and the Kohler family. His carved telephone books are exclusively represented by Projects Gallery. Several of his phone books are now available as high-resolution photographic images in a variety of sizes.