The world renowned Contemporary Realist, Claudio Bravo, was born on November 8th, 1936 in Valparaíso, Chile. Bravo uses oil painting, charcoal drawing, pastel and etch as techniques with which he aspires an almost photographic precision; his represented forms acquire a reality superior to their own models. Bravo is regarded as one of the masters of Contemporary Realism, the straightforward realistic approach to representation which continues to be widely practiced in this post-abstract era. He is a paradigm for his generation, and alongside Roberto Matta, is one of the most famous Chilean artists in the world.
To say that tradition and modernity are not incompatible is demonstrated with an abundance of visual argument from the work of Claudio Bravo. His work puts us face to face with a renewed and exalted vision of the best that tradition has to offer and the purest and essential that we could call contemporary art.
In the “Tentaciones de San Antonio” (Top Picture) Bravo brings us a sacred theme with irradiant precision. The painting exemplifies his interest for minimalism and draws us closer to themes familiar to the painter, who dramatizes the religious content to add dissenting elements to stimulate the association. In his “Cristo Yacente” for example, we observe an almost incorporeality of the cadaver of Christ which sometimes appears to float or levitate in his perfect immobility.
In Chile, Claudio Bravo is in his own chapter in the history of contemporary Chilean art. This is because he always strove far beyond his contemporary vanguard, as if, in his study, time had stood still and as if no new tendencies and generations would have an effect on him.
His oil painted nudes on linen have reached prices above the million dollar mark in New York auctions. He lives half of the year in Chile and the other half in Tangier. Bravo, also makes sculptures and this is shown by his impressive skill and technique that doesn’t leave a single trace of his brush on his canvases.
These characteristics of Claudio Bravo’s work have generated overwhelming commercial success and has resulted in his expositions being visited by a large amount of people. In fact, no other exposition has been able to equal the enormous number of visitors nor the interest that his expositions in the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes has caused with the public.
Sources: Fernando Ureña Rib,