The Provincial Council of Visual Arts and the Pedro Esquerré Gallery in Matanzas agreed to award the 2020 Provincial Prize for Plastic Arts to the teachers Lorenzo Padilla Díaz and José Ramón Chávez Pérez for their fruitful artistic careers.
The jury reviewed the proposal of five nominees, among whom, in addition to the winners, were Juan Manuel Vázquez, Javier Dueñas and Julio Zamora (Nani), with outstanding and multi-award-winning works. It was known that the delivery of both awards will take place on January 27th, 2021, in homage to the 70th anniversary of the main gallery in Matanzas.
The jury’s decision was unanimous. It was made up of Juan Francisco González, president of the Provincial Council of Visual Arts; Alexander Lobaina, artist, art critic and specialist; Agustín Drake, sculptor and Prize in 2007; Luis Octavio Hernández, craftsman and general coordinator of the Havana Biennial in Matanzas; Idania Álvarez, art critic and president of the Visual Arts section of UNEAC; Moisés Rodríguez, artist and art critic and Mireya Galán, researcher and art historian.
Lorenzo Padilla, born in Matanzas, was born on September 18th , 1931. To say that he has a wide-ranging history is to relate a life that from a very young age he assumed with painting as the maximum inspiration. Historians review that around 1957, he enrolled in the Alberto Tarascó Academy, where all the notable artists of his generation were trained in Matanzas.
A short time later, he won a scholarship at the Prado Museum, Madrid. He travels to Paris and the enchantment is reaffirmed there. His contact with the best of universal art does not prevent him from knowing the works of the emblematic figures of Cuban art, with special attraction to the avant-garde creators.
They say that, established in France, he paints and records constantly, contacts contemporary artists and almost in unison begins to buy artistic pieces. Direct contact with originals from African culture reaffirmed their desire to provide their hometown with an art museum and then they arrived in the Athens of Cuba, which constitutes one of the widest repertoires of African cultural heritage of which there is knowledge. in the Hispanic American continent. The collection donated by Padilla has more than 500 pieces corresponding to fourteen countries and seventy-two ethnic groups, which today are part of the museum collections for that institution due to their generosity.
For his part, the teacher José Ramón Chávez, a native of Amarillas, in Calimete, on July 27, 1938, stands out for his aesthetic vision as a designer, illustrator, photographer and painter. He studied from 1957 to 1958 at the San Alejandro Academy of Plastic Arts in Havana.
He is the founder of UNEAC and worked for many decades linked to the press and the graphic arts. He has participated in more than 50 collective, provincial, national and international exhibitions and his greatest skill is focused on the cultural and political poster and painting, with which he won awards at the main events in the country and other nations.
His works are located in private collections in Spain, Germany, Canada, the United States, China and Portugal. Two artists who honor Matanzas, awarded this year with the 2020 Prize awarded by the Provincial Council of Visual Arts and the prestigious Pedro Esquerré gallery.