Biography of Luis Fernando Álvarez (1902-1952)

Poet, Narrator, journalist and Venezuelan diplomat, born in Caracas on December 28, 1901, and died in his hometown on October 24, 1952. Considered one of the great Latin American surrealist poets of the 20th century, left a deep poetic production characterized by the pathetic presence of death.

Driven from his early youth to the cultivation of literary creation, he/she guided his first professional steps along the path of journalism, discipline he/she came to achieve notoriety in the cultural Venezuelan media, as editor of the Rotary criticism (1937) and director of magazine development. Simultaneously, he/she joined major literary forums of his native country and became known for his poetic compositions of marked sign surrealist, mainly through the group Friday, which was one of its founding members. Gathered around the eponymous magazine, this group of young Venezuelan authors was composed by poets from different aesthetic trends, as Ángel Miguel Queremel (1899-1939), José Ramón Heredia (1900-1987), Pablo Rojas Guardia (1909-1978), Otto's single (1912-1975) and Vicente Gerbasi (1913-1993).

In his role as public man in the service of the interests of his nation, Luis Fernando Álvarez occupied different diplomatic posts that, throughout his life, led him to remain long time outside of Venezuela. Many diplomatic legations that frequented, include the Philippines, Honduras and Costa Rica.

His beginnings in the world of poetic creation took place at the heart of this atmosphere of pessimism and helplessness that shook the conscience of all the globe at the end of the first world war; that is why all his work turn around the presence of obsessive death, always accompanied by other issues that define the existential angst of the human being, such as the feeling of loneliness and the pathetic contemplation of a desolate and hostile environment. From the stylistic point of view, this constant reflection on uprooting and abandonment led him to rethink, throughout his prolific career lyric, the aesthetic fundamentals of the avant-garde and even the ethical postulates of societies that made it possible. Moreover, the expressive force of his poetic language, centered and focused again and again on the inescapable presence of death, allows literary finds of a tear as plastic as this: "Oh, the dead of weary faces, / sailing back, still waters, / with drawn hands, as sleeping." "/ Dead, whose purple nails and beards sad, / grow - oh, still - between ants and darkness". A similar tone can be seen in his most celebrated compositions, as the entitled "ceremonies before the death of my cicada" or "There's a pain", where you can read the following excerpt: "widows hands / ragged the epidermis of silence / with howls of bones, which feed / bare feet of orphans".

Among his most celebrated poems by criticism and specialized readers, are graduates go and see (Caracas: cooperative of graphic art, 1936), Recital (Caracas: publications of "Group Friday," 1939), portfolio of the dismantled ship (Caracas: publications of "Group Friday," 1940), solitude with you (Caracas: publications of "Group Friday," 1940), eve of death (Caracas: publications of "Group Friday," 1940) and poet, cloud and sons (Caracas: Editorial Elite, 1941).

As Narrator, Luis Fernando Álvarez gave printed a collection of his short stories, presented under the title of return to life (1933).


-GERBASI, Vicente. "luis Fernando Álvarez and his death chaos" in RNC (Caracas), 17, pp. 51-64.

-PLA and BELTRAN, p. "Luis Fernando Álvarez", Humanities (Mérida [Venezuela]), II, 7-8 (1960).

-VENEGAS FILARDO, "Luis Fernando Álvarez, poet of death and loneliness", in RNC (Caracas), 37, pp. 3-10.