Figari, Pedro (1861–1938)

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Figari, Pedro (1861–1938)

Pedro Figari (b. 29 June 1861; d. 24 July 1938), Uruguayan painter. Born in Montevideo, Figari had no formal art training in his youth but later studied drawing and painting with Godofredo Sommavilla in Montevideo and with Virgilio Ripari in Venice (1886). His astonishing artistic career did not begin until 1921, at age sixty, when he had his first exhibition in Buenos Aires at the Galería Müller. In 1925 he moved to Paris, where he remained for nine years. In the seventeen years following his first exhibition in Buenos Aires he turned out some 3,000 cardboard designs consisting of social topics, landscapes, colonial patios, folk dances, black country women, horses, and gauchos. His style displays an inner dynamism deriving from rapid strokes and a poetic vision of color. He received the grand prize at the Centennial of Uruguayan Independence Exhibition in Montevideo, and the gold medal at the Ibero-American Exhibition, Seville, Spain, both in 1930. He was one of the founders of Uruguay's school of arts (1898), as well as a founding member of the Sociedad Amigos del Arte in Buenos Aires (1924). Figari was the author of several books, including Art, Aesthetics and the Ideal (1912), in which he developed ideas taken from Herbert Spenser, and La historia Kiria (1930), the description of a Uruguayan utopia.

See alsoArt: The Twentieth Century; Gaucho.


Vicente Gesualdo, Aldo Viglione, and Rodolfo Santos, Diccionario de artistas plásticos en la Argentina (1988).

Additional Bibliography

Anastasía, Luis V., and Walter Rela. Figari, lucha continua. Montevideo: Academia Uruguaya de Letras, 1994.

Sanguinetti, Julio María. El doctor Figari. Montevideo: Aguilar: Fundación BankBoston, 2002.

                               Amalia Cortina Aravena