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Enrique Gil Guerra

by on January 13, 2016

Enrique Gil Guerra, deceased artist from Spain (1912 – 1996).

Enrique Gil Guerra was born in Madrid Spain on July 20, 1912 and died on March 1,1996.
Enrique Gil Guerra was born, lived and painted in Madrid, Spain. Son of Enrique Gil Perez, engraver and goldsmith, descended from a family settled in Almagro, Ciudad Real and Leandra War Galindo, a descendant of Leon Villamartn de Don Sancho. Gil Guerra lost his father when he was only three years old. He was sent to boarding school in the College of Orphans of San Ildefonso where he created drawings between the ages of 12 to13 years.

In 1927 Gil Guerra joined the School of Painting, Sculpture and Engraving in San Fernandoin Madrid, graduating in 1932. At school he met his future teacher, Manuel Benedito, who was a disciple of Joaquin Sorolla and member of Generation Painters 27 along with Alvarez de Sotomayor, Rusinol, Josep Maria Sert,and Romero de Torres.  Under the tutelage of Benedito they began to teach painting.

In the summer of 1931, while in Alhambra Spain with his school, he had the opportunity to come into contact with a sculptor from Granada, Pablo de Loyzaga, whose studio he visited several times. It was there that he met Maria Elvia de Loyzaga, the daughter of the sculptor, whom he married in 1942. Maria also devoted herself to painting.

In 1936 Gil Guerra joined the Military Service.

After the Civil War was over his first activities were directed to the field of commercial art.  Gil Guerra worked for various advertising firms in Madrid.  His work became recognized and he received awards from Feria de Jerez, Daily Town and many others.

He then joined the School of Arts and Crafts in Madrid.

Gil Guerra continued to paint in his own studio in Madrid from 1942. He made several exhibitions in Madrid with  Macaroni and Alcon.

His style was more of realism of the early twentieth century, however from the 1970’s forward his paintings gradually shifted to Impressionism.

After the Civil War the focus for Gil Guerra was towards realism in portrait. Spanish grown popular genre motifs in his paintings reflecting the typical characters of different regions, especially Andalusians such as the Gypsy, Water Carriers, etc. The last period of his artistic life evolved progressively towards Impressionism, reaching a compromise between realism that had always characterized him, Figures and Impressionism.

Between 1934-1992 he made many portrait oil paintings, which were acquired by galleries and individuals in the United States, Canada, Colombia, Venezuela, Chile, Sweden, France, England, Belgium, Japan, Spain, among others. The gallery representing Gil Guerra’s paintings in the USA was Arnot Gallery in New York.

Some of his best known works owe their popularity to being widely reproduced on calendars and posters. The famous “Spike Rota” box is now in the pictorial collection of UEE (Union of Explosives Rio Tinto) alongside works by Romero de Torres and Francisco Ribera.

Gil Guerra also taught Advertising Drawing disciplines in the School of Arts and Crafts in Madrid.

In the professional field of advertising his most famous was the Anise Asturiana, which appeared 5 or 6 times a year continuously between 1950 and 1998, on the back of the journal ABC of Madrid and Seville. It showed a picture of La Asturiana (after a drawing created and developed by Nike, which was the nickname professional Gil Guerra for their advertising activities) in an allegory of the date or event celebrated in each case.

Medals and Prizes:

1930 - Award Air Painting of the School of Painting, Sculpture and Engraving in Madrid.
1930 and 1931 - Pensioner of the Escuela de Bellas Artes de San Fernando in residences Paular and Mallorca.
1931 - Medal of the Circulo de Bellas Artes de Madrid.
1931 - Pensioner Concession School of Fine Arts at the Residence of the Alhambra in Granada.
1935 - Bag (Public Announcement Department of Fine Arts of 25/07/1934 Ministerial Order.) Of the National Exhibition of Fine Arts.
1950 - First Prize and publication of poster in the Poster Contest III for Harvest Festival and Fair of Jerez de la Frontera .
1951 - First Prize and publication of poster in the Poster Contest for the Feria de Jerez de la Frontera.
1951 - Third Prize III National Exhibition of Advertising Journal Pueblo.
1953 - Medal of Honor and Diploma of the 1st International Exhibition of Crafts.
1970 - Distinguished Craftsman Madrid.
1970 - Award for calendar 1970 Rio Tinto Explosives Union. Oil selected “Spike Rota”.
1970’s - Selection of oils for different calendars company Optical Ulloa. Subjects including those of dancers, musical figures, Spanish girls in their typical clothing.


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