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"Art is not an end in itself. It introduces the soul into a higher spiritual order, which it expresses and in some sense explains." -Thomas Merton, monk, writer, theologian.

Contemplating art can be a means for spiritual connection. It can provide moments of spiritual awakening. 

Atlanta-based artist Carlos Solis has supplied "Right to Joy" — perhaps a surprising name for the subject matter. Some spiritual themes may be obvious, others more subtle. What inspires your spirit in this piece? What spiritual themes do you identify? 

Carlos was born in Maracaibo, Venezuela and currently resides in Kennesaw, Georgia. Carlos started painting in the mid-nineties as a freelancer specializing in nature, fantasy, spirituality and conceptual art.

His passion in painting started with the magnificent elements of nature, fauna and flora, and the natural beauty that involve their selective conditions. For example, the majestic animals of the Amazon or Indians from Venezuela (Guajiros).

Carlos has always tried to expand his work to other areas of reality and with a spiritual meaning. Carlos occasionally has the tendency to go from one extreme to another in order to explore the ranges of styles and techniques in creating the most beautiful and delicate components of life to the most complex and strange art.

Carlos has had the pleasure and the opportunity to experience the richness of many cultures in South and North America, which has allowed him to expand his imagination and understand the differences and similarities of both worlds. His work reflects the distinctness of his artistic perception from those experiences, which provides vivid colors and physical details in order to make something visually pleasing, grotesque or unfamiliar. Carlos also tries to create awareness by expressing an opinion about our delicate habitat and the lack of knowledge about cultural and racial diversity in South America.

Carlos is a curator and the leader of a group of Latin American artist residing in Georgia called Cantrapunto. Carlos has exhibited in several cities around the country including but not limited to New York, Chicago and Atlanta. See more of his work on his web site

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