Luis Martin Ruiz was born in New York City from Puerto Rican parents. His artwork is inspired by a sense of displacement and change concerning the political status of Puerto Rico and the standing of their societies. He studied at Pratt Institute of Art in New York and the University of Texas in El Paso where he received a BFA in graphic design, sculpture and Latin American Art History. The Mess and the Magic develops from Afro-Caribbean carnival masks – objects attached to the spheres of magic. They are shields of an ancient and placid civilization that allure to religion, death and principle. It is a metaphor for the passions that torment us, the terrible internal conflicts of this world profaned by the waste of our consumer society. It exemplifies the conflicts of Puerto Rican identity and an obsessive search for the resolution of the ills and demons that haunt this infernal tropical paradise.