Alfonso Rodríguez Castelao Spain
1-30-1886 Rianxo, ESP – 1-7-1950 Buenos Aires, ARGBack to Artist IndexView Artists Paintings
Alfonso Rodriguez Castelao spent his childhood and adolescence in Santa Rosa de Toay, Argentina. In 1900, the Rodríguez Castelao family returned to Rianxo.
In 1908 he obtained his degree in Medicine from the University of Santiago de Compostela. He passed his doctorate in Madrid in 1909, where he began to gain some popularity as a caricaturist and cartoon artist. In fact, Alfonso Rodriguez Castelao often admitted he only studied medicine to please the wishes of his father. As a caricaturist, Rodríguez Castelao focussed on the everyday in a humorous way, although after experiencing the Spanish Civil War, he turned to using his art to denounce the cruelties of Fascism in a collection of paintings.
In 1916, he moved to Pontevedra, where he joined the Irmandades da Fala ("Brotherhoods of the Language").
In 1920, he starts publishing the magazine Nós, together with Vicente Risco and Otero Pedrayo. That same year he travelled through France, the Netherlands and Germany.
From 1930 Rodríguez Castelao's political activism intensifies even further. His life and work always revolved around politics and his Galician nationalist ideas.
He became a member of the Royal Galician Academy in 1933, and shortly after that, in 1935, he was forced into exile by the Spanish government to the Spanish city of Badajoz, in Extremadura, where he worked as a civil servant.
The Spanish civil war began whilst Alfonso Rodriguez Castelao was in Madrid presenting the results of the referendum for the Galician Statute of Autonomy, which had been approved by 98 per cent of voters, and in which Castelao had played a role, together with his personal friend Alexandre Bóveda.
In 1938, he was sent by the Spanish government to the Soviet Union, the United States and Cuba, in order to obtain support for the Republic. From New York City he cruised to Buenos Aires.
Alfonso Rodriguez Castelao died on 7 January 1950 at the hospital of the Centro Gallego in Buenos Aires, Argentina
Art Movement: Art Nouveau
Traveled: Argentina, Portugal, Brazil, USA, Russia, Cuba, France, Netherlands, Germany