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Bullish on a Promising Spanish Artist

Posted by on October 12, 2009 at 1:30 pm

Artist Beñat Iglesias, self-portrait - "Auto"Beñat Iglesias, self-portrait

Harlem’s Alex Adam Gallery opens its “Artists and Monitors” art show on Thursday, October 15. The show uniquely features the works of “three of New York’s most extraordinary contemporary figurative artists, and the painters who are and have been privileged to be their assistants.”

One of the “Teacher’s Monitors” whose works will be featured is Beñat Iglesias, a very talented portrait artist who was born in Pamplona, Spain in 1979 on October 12 – thirty years ago today. And yes, Pamplona is home of the world-famous “Running of the Bulls,” the high-risk, high-adrenaline running of 1,200-pound bulls (i.e., with horns) through the cobbled streets of this picturesque city in northern Spain.

This hometown image is in sharp contrast to how Iglesias describes his approach to art: “My work is devoted to the mundane, to depict humble and ordinary people I aim to show in their natural state, to reveal their way of communicating to the world.”

I first saw Iglesias’s talent showcased five years ago, when I attended an art show at New York’s Art Student’s League. Iglesias’s education in fine arts has spanned more than a decade, including a fine arts degree from the Universidad Del Pais Vasco (UPV) in Bilboa, Spain; then further study at the Edinburgh College of Art in the UK, the University of Fine Arts in Barcelona, and New York’s National Academy School of Fine Arts, the Art Students League, and the Andrew Reiss Studio.

Iglesias has exhibited his work in numerous shows in New York and throughout Europe. In 2007, he was a semi-finalist in the 70th Annual American Artists Drawing competition.

I find myself immediately drawn into his work, and how he is able to capture remarkably true-to-life expressions of unremarkable people. I have bought several pieces from Iglesias’s collection over the last several years, and intend on buying more as he continues to grow and develop.

Iglesias’s bright future has been built on a foundation of years of hard work, high quality training, learning by doing, and a bull-headed dedication to his vocation. All are key ingredients for success in any field of work or business. Identify the talent, grow and nurture it, and put yourself in environments where creativity can thrive.

Happy 30th birthday to a promising artist, Beñat Iglesias, or better yet —
¡Feliz cumpleaños!

The show at Alex Adam Gallery in Harlem (78 West 120th Street) runs from October 15th-25th. The exact schedule can be found on the gallery’s website.