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Nelly Perazzo

(b Buenos Aires, Nov 29, 1922 ; d 2015).

Argentine painter and diplomat. Although trained as an architect, he began painting while living in Paris as a diplomat from 1948 to 1950, taking a particular interest in the structural methods of Cubism, the color sense of Pierre Bonnard, and the subtlety of Paul Klee’s paintings; his concern with light also emerged at this time. On his return to Buenos Aires in 1950 he generally used geometric motifs in his paintings, creating dynamic compositions from the tensions and rhythms produced by scattered squares, triangles, and, above all, circles. In 1952 he helped found the Artistas Modernos de la Argentina.

Ocampo returned to Europe as a diplomat in 1956, living in Rome until 1959 and in Paris from 1961 to 1966. Although he softened the geometrical severity of his work, he continued to employ a meticulous technique, using a form of pointillism to render evanescent forms and a diffuse atmosphere. He concentrated his attention on the relationship between large and small forms, leading to their fusion with the background into single planes of color, with the smaller elements gathered together or expanded in freely rendered rhythms so as to occupy the whole surface. He continued to use these dynamic patterns of colored shapes, but after ...


Horacio Safons

(b La Plata, Oct 1, 1892; d Paris, Oct 16, 1971).

Argentine painter and museum director. He began to paint at the age of 14 and in 1911 traveled to Italy on a state scholarship. He studied in Florence with Giovanni Giacometti and in 1913 settled in Milan, later engaging in discussions about Futurism with Carlo Carrà, Filippo Tommaso Marinetti, and Alberto Sartoris. His paintings, however, showed very little influence from Futurism, owing more to Synthetic Cubism. In 1923 he exhibited thirty-five works at the Sturm-Galerie in Berlin. He met Juan Gris in Paris in 1924, just before returning to Buenos Aires, where his first exhibition produced such violent reactions that his paintings—the first Cubist works seen there—had to be protected by glass from being spat on.

Works painted by Pettoruti after his return to Argentina continued to show his mastery of a late Cubist style; The Quintet (1927; San Francisco, CA, MOMA), for instance, is reminiscent both of the work of Gris and of Picasso’s ...


(María Concepción Juan Nepomuceno Estanislao de la)

(b Guanajuato, Dec 13, 1886; d Mexico City, Nov 24, 1957).

Mexican painter and draughtsman. He was one of the most important figures in the Mexican mural movement and won international acclaim for his vast public wall paintings, in which he created a new iconography based on socialist ideas and exalted the indigenous and popular heritage in Mexican culture. He also executed large quantities of easel paintings and graphic work.

Rivera’s artistic precocity was recognized by his parents, both of whom were teachers. He was drawing at two, taking art courses at nine and enrolled at the Academia de S Carlos in Mexico City at eleven. There the quality of his work, especially his landscape painting, earned him a scholarship at fifteen and a government pension at eighteen. At nineteen he was awarded a travel grant to Europe, and in 1907 he went to Spain, settling in Paris two years later. In November 1910 he returned to Mexico for an exhibition of his work at the Academia, which was part of the Mexican Centennial of Independence celebrations. The Mexican Revolution began the day the exhibition opened, and Rivera returned to Paris early in ...


Ana Tapias

(b Porlamar, Aug 29, 1927).

Venezuelan painter and teacher. He studied from 1943 to 1947 at the Escuela de Artes Plásticas in Caracas, where he then taught from 1947 to 1973. His painting, which evolved from Cubism through geometric abstraction to lyrical landscape painting, shows his attraction to coastal light and to open spaces. The colours are limited to shades of blue, green, grey and white. Vásquez Brito represented Venezuela in the 31st Venice Biennale in ...