View ArtistHugo Cifuentes

Artist's Biography
Hugo Cifuentes was born in Otavalo, Ecuador in 1923. He died in Quito, Ecuador in 2000.

Hugo Cifuentes was a pioneering Latin American photographer.

Cifuentes began studying drawing and painting in the 1940s, before turning to photography. Cifuentes received his first prize for photographic composition in 1949. In the 1960s, Cifuentes joined VAN — a group of progressive Informalist artists, founded by Enrique Tábara, who broke prevailing art tradition and found inspiration from the Constructivist Movement, Surrealist Movement and Pre-Columbian art. VAN strongly opposed Communist political views and searched for new artistic pathways while staying connected to their roots.

As Cifuentes developed his own visual vocabulary, humorous undertones became evident in his art. Cifuentes responded to internal conflicts and other miseries that gripped Ecuador with humor. By seeing things from a different angle, Cifuentes added new layers to the often hard realities.

In 1983, Cifuentes won the Casa de las Américas Award.

One of the most famous photographers from Ecuador is Hugo Cifuentes (Ecuador, 1923-2000). He is considered as the most important pioneer in contemporary photography in that country. In the 1960s he was the co-founder of VAN, a group of progressive artists who in their autonomous work broke with the prevailing art tradition. After studying painting and draughtsmanship, in the 1940s Cifuentes began to photograph. In 1949 he received his first prize for photographic composition. Many further distinctions followed this, including the Casa de las Américas Award in 1983.

Gradually Hugo Cifuentes developed his own visual vocabulary, with humorous undertones. It was his manner of responding to the internal conflicts and other miseries that gripped Ecuador for many years. By seeing things from a different angle, Cifuentes added new layers to the often hard reality.
Artworks

Hugo Cifuentes
Presentimiento (102828)
1986
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Hugo Cifuentes
La trompeta (102833)
1982
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