Lucio Lopez-Rey 1904-1957) “Campesino” P457
A blunt and forceful image from this Spanish born politically-activist painter exiled to Mexico and subsequently settled in New York. . Framed 20″ x 24″.
Painter, draughtsman, cartoonist, illustrator, ceramist and lawyer, Lucio López-Rey was born in Madrid, Spain, January 19, 1904. At the age of twelve his drawings illustrated the magazine "Charlot". At the age of 30 was named artistic director of the newspaper Politica and his caricatures reproduced there had great success. His first solo show was in 1935 in Galería de Bellas Artes, Madrid. During the Spanish civil war López-Rey moved to Paris. He then created many ceramic pieces that "had something of fantastic, a lot of ironic and enriched with an extraordinary decorative brilliance". In 1939 he established himself in Copenhagen. The Danish National Museum acquired several of his ceramic artworks. When Germany invaded Denmark, he traveled with his wife to Finland and from there to Mexico (1942).
He immigrated in 1945 to New York where had his first individual exhibition in the Bonestell Gallery. In 1946 he exhibited again his works and the New Yorker art critics rewarded him with a prize of US$2,000 granted to the Paintings of the Year. Between 1945 and 1954, López-Rey exhibited his works individually in the galleries Today' s Art, Stuart Art, Demotte, Raymond and Raymond, Knoedler, Passedoit, Ward Eggleston, and also in the Pan American Union in Washington, D.C. His art has been described as "on the one hand, plenty of Spanish tradition; on the other, plenty of a modern technique, but the Spanish and the contemporary universality of his painting have joined and have a particular form that it’s hard to place López-Rey inside a certain kind of school".
He continued to work as an illustrator for magazines, as well as a professor of Spanish at the United Nations and served as artistic director of the TEMAS magazine in New York. He developed lung cancer and died on January 10, 1957, at the age of 53, in a New York hospital.
Tomás Olmedo, editor of TEMAS said: "…The painting of López-Rey came deep inside him, passionated, carried out with love, emerged from heart and mind, ...this man is an expert in unusual combinations: As painter, his technique associated flemish artists with Mexicans; then, he is at the same time artist and lawyer". His works have been exhibited in France, Sweden, Denmark, Mexico, Argentina and United States. (Summary of the Biography of the artist provided by their niece Diana López-Rey Arce, Santiago de Chile, 2004)