Biography of Pedro Luna (1896-1956)

Chilean painter born in the city of Los Angeles on August 19, 1896 and died in Viña del Mar on 18 December 1956. It was a real cutting-edge in Chilean painting and for many, a singular milestone in the plastic panorama of the 20th century. He/She joined the brilliant generation of thirteen was, in a way, a survivor since almost all of its members died prematurely without artistic, like Alfredo wolves and Pachín Bustamante maturity. Later, Pedro Luna joined the no less famous generation of the twentieth year identifying himself with it thereby that some consider it as his most genuine representative.

Original appearance and clothing estrafalaria, as he/she was remembered by his friend Waldo Vila, painter and art critic, Pedro Luna attended the school of medicine where drawing Anatomy films commissioned by the surgeon and Professor of this specialty David Benavente, friend and enthusiast of the talent of the painter. Although the meager gain generated by the sale of the anatomical sketches, usually gifted students, did not seem to compensate for stays in the dissection room of the Faculty and their visits to the grave of the cemetery, Luna was useful and enjoyable this mixture of mischief and fidelity to the pictorial model.

Great artist, endowed with an innate sense of composition, Moon was one of the outstanding students of Fernando Álvarez de Sotomayor and Juan Francisco González, although he/she would rebel at the prevailing academic Mannerism in his teachings. Post-Impressionist line and passionate nature of the landscape and the inhabitants of the Vega by both the dynamism of urban life, Moon painted large full sketches of movement: groups of verduleras, vegetables boots, sunrises in the city, oxcarts, chimneys of factories, crowd of workers at work, etc., with the feeling of excitementfantasy and freedom prevailing in his spirit. Permanent search of means of expression and artistic originality, led it to the music as a dimension of projection; Thus, self-taught, began to play the piano from the mansion of the Recoleta neighborhood in which he/she lived with his aunts and the organ of the nearby church of the Vinita, thanks to the friendship with the pastor and a commitment to liven up the evening masses.

After the historical sample of 1913 in the halls of El Mercurio, Pedro Luna obtained consecration of criticism and received numerous awards in the official salons, compared with after his figure to Van Gogh, by passion, boldness and overwhelming temperament that printed his works. Among those who considered to Moon the Van Gogh Chilean Pablo Nerudawas, an admirer of the strong footprint southern of mystery and color of the represented landscapes.

The desire to travel to Europe became a reality with a fruitful visit to Florence, Rome, Venice and the South of France where he/she learned new techniques, toured museums and did not paint. Back in Chile, he/she had exhibitions in which showed a new plastic expression which, however, would not Eclipse his previous work. It was then when he/she decided to immerse themselves in the villages of the South of Chile dedicated to the representation of native issues with studies of figures and customs of the Indians. After a distance of several years of artistic circuits, Pedro Luna resurfaced with a retrospective exhibition of his work that was very well received by the official critics and in which a self-portrait reflected the spark of wit that always characterized his gaze. Until his death continued painting in his studio of the House of la Recoleta. Dance of the dwarfs or cabaret of Magellan and del castillo Yarur are among its most prestigious works.


VILA, W. A captaincy of painters, Publisher of the Pacific, S. A., Santiago de Chile, 1966.