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 Omar Rayo  (1928 - 2010)

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Lived/Active: Colombia/Mexico      Known for: mod printmaking, painting, engraving and design

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Omar Rayo
An example of work by Omar Rayo
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Biography from
Please note: Artists not classified as American in our database may have limited biographical data compared to the extensive information about American artists.

A painter, caricaturist, engraver and Colombian designer ascribed to the movement Op Art*, Omar Rayo believes lines and angles form big abysses.  He studied drawing for correspondence in the Academy Zier of Buenos Aires.  In a tour for Colombia and Latin America, he recognized in the primitivism an authentic expression form.

One of the most celebrated exhibitions is the one carried out in the National Room of the Museum of the Palace of fine arts of Mexico, titled "20 years, 100 works: Omar Rayo".  In 1981 he founded in the municipality of Roldanillo (it Fences of the Cauca) the Museum Omar Rayo, possessor nowadays of one of the best collections of Latin American artists, and of the best in their work.

Along their career he has carried out cartoons, engravings, and it has cultivated the pure geometric abstraction*.  The Schell are among the numerous prizes that he has obtained (1958), the Special of Engraving II Biennial Interamerican Mexico 1960, that of the Museum of Art of Philadelphia (1965), that of the XIX and XXI living rooms of Colombian Artists (1966 and 1970), that of the Biennial one of São Paulo (1971), among others.  He has published the books Blind Knot (1974) and Recent Works (1994)

The Museum of Rayo was founded on January 20, 1981 by Rayo out of his personal effort, Colombian government agencies and other supporters to establish a site and expose his works of art in his hometown of Roldanillo.  The museum was designed by Mexican architect Leopoldo Goout and opened with a collection of 2,000 of Rayo's artwork and some 500 other Latin American artists' works.  It contains a library, many modules for expositions, graphic arts workshop and a theater.

* For more in-depth information about these terms and others, see Glossary

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