Claudio Bravo Camus – Google doodle on Chilean hyperrealist painter on his 83rd birthday
Happy Birthday Claudio Bravo Camus! By dedicating a beautiful artistic doodle, Google celebrates the 83rd birthday of the famous Chilean hyperrealist painter, who fused the classical technique of Spanish Baroque painters with a touch of Salvador Dali-esque surrealism.
Claudio Bravo Camus was born on November 8, 1936 in Chile's major city, Valparaíso. His parents, Tomás Bravo Santibáñez and Laura Camus Gómez, had 7 children. His father was a successful businessman and an owner of a ranch, while his mother was a housewife.
Claudio Bravo Camus grew up on a ranch in Melipilla. After dancing for the Compañia de Ballet de Chile and acting at the Catholic University of Chile, he applied his talents to visual arts. Despite his father's objections, the largely self-taught artist persisted, displaying his paintings at a well-known Valparaíso gallery by the age of 17.
He left his family in 1945 to join the Colegio San Ignacio in Santiago, Chile, where he excelled in choir, literature and music. He gave his teacher a portrait to increase his grades in Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry. Father Dussuel, noticed his self-taught artistic ability and paid for him to study art in the studio of Miguel Venegas Cifuentes in Santiago. Eventually, his dad granted him permission to take the classes and took over the responsibility of paying for them. He continued studying under Venegas from the age of 11 to 20 and it was the only formal art training he ever received.
Claudio Bravo had his first exhibition at 'Salón 13' in Santiago at the age of 17 in 1954. He received good reviews and the exhibition had been a great success for him. All the works were sold, although they went to family and friends. He was highly influenced by people such as Luis Oyarzun, a poet and philosopher.
The renowned Chilean writer and researcher Benjamín Subercaseaux highly encouraged him to expand his knowledge through reading. Next year (in 1955), he danced professionally with the Compañía de Ballet de Chile and worked for Teatro de Ensayo of the Universidad Católica de Chile and had his second exhibition at 'Salón 13'.
Claudio Bravo's work was sometimes compared to so-called photo-realist painters, but he did not work from photographs. "Always I have relied on the actual subject matter," he said, mentioning Mark Rothko's abstract color-field paintings as an influence. "The eye sees so much more than the camera: half tones, shadows, minute changes in the color or light."
Claudio Bravo Camus died on June 4, 2011 at his residence in Taroudant, Morocco of two heart attacks. Google dedicates his realistic works with a doodle that focuses on his iconic series of mysterious packages wrapped in paper and tied with string, which brought him notoriety starting in the 1960s.