Eduardo Abela

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Eduardo Abela
His great vocation for painting arose at the age of 20 working as a cigar roller. So, in 1912 he moved to Havana and began studying in San ALejandro Fine Arts Academy. His early humoristic drawings were published in Havana newspapers. He lived and worked in Spain from 1921 to 1924, and in that very year returned to Cuba. Next year, 1925, he created his famous character, “El bobo” (“The Fool”) which became a struggle instrument against Gerardo Machado dictatorship. He joined to those painters who, in Avance (Forward) magazine , introduced more updated artistic languages and exhibited in the Muestra de Arte Nuevo (New Art Exhibit); He travelled again to Europe and lived two years in Paris, having such a success that he could displayed his works in Zak Gallery.
In 1929 he joined the political campaign against Machado through his ironic drawings until the dictatorship was overthrowned by the people in 1933, when his journalistic labour finished. As consul of the Cuban government, he arrived to Milan. Back in Cuba he painted some of his most outstanding works of that stage: Guajiros, (Cuban Peasants), awarded at the II National Exhibition of Painting and Sculpture, 1938, Los novios (The Promised Ones). He created the very important Estudio Libre para Pintores y Escultores. (Open Studio for Painters and Sculptors) for a non-conventional and a truly encouraged artistic creation teaching..
From 1942 to 1952 he rendered diplomatic services in Mexico and Guatemala; in this latter country the National Award on Painting was conferred to him (1947). Also there he painted El Caos (The Chaos) (1950), which settled a remarkable transformation in his expressive language: from medium format pictures to small scale ones; modelling figures to an idyllic, detailed, meticulous atmosphere, recalling Klee and Chagall. In 1954, after having returned to Cuba, he created a great amount of quality works, considered small jewells, which he exhibited in numerous artistic places, among them a retrospective at the Galería de La Habana, in 1964.