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 Felipe Castaneda  (1933 - )

About: Felipe Castaneda
 

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Lived/Active: Mexico      Known for: figural sculpture

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BIOGRAPHY for Felipe Castaneda
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Birth
1933 (La Palma, Mexico)
 
Lived/Active
Mexico

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figural sculpture

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Biography from Nedra Matteucci Galleries:
Please note: Artists not classified as American in our database may have limited biographical data compared to the extensive information about American artists.

The female forms that Felipe Castañeda creates out of marble, onyx, and bronze embody both the traditional and modern sensibilities of Mexico. Forms of motherhood and fertility evoking the pre-Columbian culture are coupled with an abstract, stylized interpretation of sensuality that is universal in its depiction of female beauty. Castañeda transforms his subjects’ contemplative expressions and simple gestures into noble artistic expressions.

Castañeda was born in La Paloma in the state of Michoacán, an area rich in pre-Columbian artifacts. As a young man he made his way to Mexico City in order to participate in the country’s more contemporary artistic culture. In 1958 he entered La Esmeralda Painting and Sculpture Academy of the National Institute of Fine Arts and began to develop a distinctive style in his approach to sculpture. He finished his studies in 1963 and worked hard to achieve his first major one-man show in 1970.

Since these initial successes, Castañeda has been exhibited and recognized in his native Mexico and around the world. His commissioned public sculptures are placed in a number of Mexican cities as well as Palm Springs, California. His work can be found in the permanent collections of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and the Museum of Art History in Cuidad Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico, among many others.

He has received numerous honors including one from UNICEF in 1980, from Israel in 1996, and from the International Academy of Modern Art in Rome in 1998.

Reflecting on his life experience, Castañeda still marvels at the mysteries of an artist’s creation: “I still consider it a kind of miracle that forms almost identical to human beings are born out of a rock – and in some cases, the only thing lacking for them to be alive is for them to move of their own accord and speak.”

Biography from Artistic Gallery:
Please note: Artists not classified as American in our database may have limited biographical data compared to the extensive information about American artists.

Felipe Castaneda was born on December 16, 1933 in Michoacan, Mexico and is working there as a sculptor.

In 1958 he came upon a teacher from an art trade school.  The teacher explained the classes that the school offered, and Felipe decided that he was going to go to school.  He enrolled that same day and took classes in drawing, modeling, carving and constructive drawing.  He absorbed knowledge very quickly and was adept at carving and sculpting.  In 1962, he married his wife Martha, and he began working for the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City.  It was at this time that Castaneda became assistant to Francisco Zuniga.

By 1966, Castaneda had acquired skill in molding plaster and clay for sculptures and then set out on a path to perfect his ability to create stone sculptures.  He credits his early training with Zuniga for the sculptor he is today.

Castaneda creates sculptures in marble, onyx and bronze.  His concentration is the female form.  The subject of women is the center of his creativity...wife, mother, lover, friend.  He depicts her kneeling, standing, sitting, reclining, and stretching - capturing all her moods.  Each of the women Castaneda creates is intended to be mysterious and provocative and realistic in anatomical proportions.

When asked if he were satisfied with his accomplishments, Castaneda replied, "What more can I ask for? Perhaps, just time to someday accomplish what every artist aspires for: to create the best, the greatest work of my life before I die."

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