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Jorge Luján-Muñoz

(b Guatemala City, Sept 16, 1781; d Guatemala City, Nov 21, 1845).

Guatemalan painter, printmaker, and medallist. He entered the mint in 1795 as an apprentice engraver but on the recommendation of its director, Pedro Garci-Aguirre, also became Master Corrector at the Escuela de Dibujo de la Sociedad Económica de Amigos del País, Guatemala City, in 1796, holding the post until 1804. He continued working at the mint until 1809 and demonstrated outstanding skill both as a medallist and engraver of coins and as an engraver and etcher. He returned to the mint in 1823 as second engraver, remaining in the post until his death.

Despite the quality of his work as a printmaker and medallist, Cabrera gained artistic recognition especially as a miniature painter, working mostly in watercolour on ivory in a meticulous technique. He produced some miniatures on religious themes and others of birds, but the majority, measuring no more than 50 mm in height or width, were portraits of members of the Guatemalan aristocracy and bourgeoisie. It is not known exactly how many he produced, but from the middle of the 1830s he began to number them, starting from 500; the highest known number of the approximately 200 authenticated miniatures is 745. Although he suffered some illness, he was most productive during the last five years of his life. An evolution can be discerned from his earliest works, dating from ...

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Eduardo Serrano

(b Santa Rosa de Osos, nr Medellín, 1876; d Paris, 1933).

Colombian sculptor, draughtsman, painter and medallist. He studied with Francisco Antonio Cano and co-founded with him the review Lectura y Arte, in which he published illustrations and vignettes influenced by the motifs and sinuous style of Art Nouveau. In 1905 he left for Havana, where his talent was more fully recognized. Cuban patronage enabled him to travel to Paris, where he executed delicate life-size marble statues that blend classicism and sensuality, such as Poetry and Silence (both c. 1914; Bogotá, Mus. N.), which are notable for their harmony and ambitious scale.

Tobón Mejía’s most personal and interesting works, however, were reliefs in bronze and other alloys in which he gave free rein to his talents as a designer, to his admiration for the subjectivity of the Symbolists and especially to his own imagination and fantasy. In works such as First Waves (1915; Bogotá, Mus. A. Mod.), in which a young woman prepares to enter the sea, or ...