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Armando Morales

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Armando Morales
20th century
(Granada, Nicaragua, 1927 - 2011, Miami, Florida)

Born 1927, Granada, Nicaragua; active 1960-75, New York; 1975-82, Princeton, NJ; 1982-present, Paris and London. Armando Morales is the single most well-known painter from Nicaragua, with an international reputation equal to that of poets Rubén Darió and Ernesto Cardenal. He was born in Granada and attended the National School of Fine Arts in Managua as a teenager, working under the artist Rodrigo Peñalba, considered the pioneer of modern Nicaraguan painting. During the late 1950s, Morales received a number of scholarships and grants, including a Guggenheim Fellowship and a grant from the Organization of American States, which allowed him to study in the United States. He lived in New York, where he adopted an abstract expressionist mode of painting. However, around 1970, he dramatically changed his style, creating works in a surrealist style reminiscent of the work of Giorgio de Chirico and dominated by the female nude. Morales has been described by critics as creating a sort of magic realism in painting, which is especially fitting considering that he has also painted portraits of the renowned magic realist authors Gabriel García Márquez and Carlos Fuentes.

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