Pablo Atchugarry was born in Montevideo, Uruguay, on August 23rd, 1954. His father Pedro, a student of the maestro Joaquín Torres García, was a great art lover who grasped the aptitude and interests that Atchugarry already manifested in his childhood, stimulating him to take up the challenge of painting.Read More
Atchugarry started showing his works at the age of eleven and, as an adolescent, soon started feeling the need to express himself in other forms and materials, such as sculpture in cement and compositions in metal and wood, although without neglecting his painting. His first personal exhibition was held in the Civic Room in Montevideo in 1972, followed two years later by his first exhibition abroad in Buenos Aires.
At the end of the seventies, Atchugarry made several trips to France, Spain and Italy, where he held his first personal exhibition in Lecco. In 1979, he discovered marble as a thoroughly fascinating material, sculpting his first piece in Carrara, La Lumière. Although he returned regularly to his native land, in 1982 he decided to settle in Lecco when he received the commission for his first large sculpture, a Pietà, which is now the property of the city's Basilica of San Nicolò.
Since 1989, his sculptural poetic has caused Atchugarry to express himself through monumental works, which are now situated in various public spaces in Europe and Latin America. Other works contribute their beauty to enriching private and public collections. In 1996, his Semilla de la esperanza (Seed of Hope), a work in Carrara marble that stands 3.90 metres high, was installed in the sculpture garden of the Uruguayan Government Building.
The Pablo Atchugarry Museum was inaugurated in Lecco, nestling between the lake and the mountains, on 25 September 1999. Here visitors can admire the artist's creations and observe him at work in his workshop next door to the Museum.
In the spring of 2001, the Province of Milan organised a retrospective of the last ten years of Atchugarry's work in Palazzo Isimbardi. The Obelisk of the Third Millennium was inaugurated in 2001 to mark the dawn of the XXI century. A sculpture in white Carrara marble, it stands six metres high in the town of Manzano, in the province of Udine.
In early 2002, Atchugarry's sculpture Ideali in Garfagnana marble, was given to the Prince Rainier of Monaco as a tribute to the 50th anniversary reign and is situated in the Avenue Princesse Grace of Monte-Carlo. His Monument to the Civilisation and Culture of Lecco Labour was inaugurated as the centrepiece of the Caleotto Roundabout in Lecco in May 2002. Made of the Bernini variety of Carrara marble, this work was carved from a 33 tonne block and stands 6.10 metres tall. In July 2002, Atchugarry received the Michelangelo Award in Carrara, in recognition of his artistic career.
His sculpture entitled_Sensation of the Infinite_, was added to the collection of the Lercaro Museum in Bologna in 2003. Atchugarry represented Uruguay in the 50th International Exhibition of the Visual Arts at the Venice Biennale in 2003 with an installation of eight sculptures in Carrara marble and Grey Bardiglio marble entitled Dreaming of Peace.
In 2005 the Berardo Collection in Lisbon, Portugal added to its patrimony Camino Vital, 1999, standing nearly 5 metres tall in Carrara marble. One of Atchugarry's most recent projects during 2005 was the opening of a new atelier at Punta del Este, Uruguay, where he works during the European winter and where the Pablo Atchugarry Foundation was established.
Atchugarry is presently working on a monumental sculpture entitled Cosmic Embrace standing 8,60 metres high will be placed in a public space in Belgium. In 2006, Atchugarry's Solo Show, A journey between matter and light, was on exhibition at the renowned Groeninge Museum in Bruges, Belgium. January 2007 marked the inauguration of the Pablo Atchugarry Workshop and Foundation in Uruguay. The mission of the foundation is to introduce and educate children and young people to the fine arts through public programs.
Text courtesy Hollis Taggart.