Kelvin Burzon is a Filipino American artist whose work explores intersections of sexuality, race, gender and religion. He was born in 1989 in Bataan, Philippines. As a child growing up in a Filipino culture, Burzon’s initial ambition was to become a Catholic priest. “I have always been interested in the religion’s role in culture and familial relationships and have been drawn to the religion’s traditions, imagery, theatricality, and its psychological vestige.” His work is inspired by cerebral influences growing up in and around the church. “My cultural and familial identity, my memories as a child, can not be separated from the church. It was an integral part of what it means to be Filipino.”
Burzon recently received MFA degree from Indiana University’s School of Art + Design where he developed his most recent bodies of work. There, he is a performing member of the African American Dance Company where he flourishes in a collaborative performance outlet. This outlet blossomed interests in critical race theory, photography’s role in people’s social identities, storytelling, archival gaps, and performance. He received his Bachelor’s from Wabash College where he studied studio art and music. There, he became versed in painting, sculpture, ceramics and photography. He studied music history, violin and piano performance, vocal performance, as well as years of ethnomusicology. He was a musician and dancer in Wamidan World Music Ensemble in Crawfordsville, IN. He studied abroad in Florence, Italy where he was exposed to a variety of religious works by Renaissance masters as well as studying oil painting techniques.
Kelvin Burzon continues to push his work with inspirations from the past, recontextualized narratives and imagery of religion, paired with the never-ending stimulation and inspiration from the LGBTQ+ community. Burzon seeks to push the limits of his work by visually redefining and creating a new narrative for himself and those like him.