Claudio Bravo Camus: Who was the hyperrealist painter and why is he being remembered?

Claudio Bravo Camus, the Chilean-born painter who made history with his hyperrealist paintings, is being remembered on what would have been his 83rd birthday.

The artist is being celebrated this Friday, 8 November in a Google Doodle inspired by his remarkable renderings of packages wrapped in paper and twine.

Born Claudio Nelson Bravo Camus in Valparaíso, Chile on 8 November, 1936, Bravo received some training with Miguel Venegas Cifuentes, another Chilean artist, but remained largely self-taught, according to the Encyclopaedia Britannica.

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He held his first exhibition at the age of 17 in Valparaíso before moving to Spain.

There, he established himself as a portrait painter. Among his clients were relatives of Spanish dictator Francisco Franco.

In 1970, Bravo had his first New York City show, where he demonstrated his skills for still lifes inspired by Spanish masters such as Diego Velázquez.

Shortly afterward, the artist moved to Tangier, Morocco, where he painted portraits, still lifes, landscapes and animals.

Among Bravo’s best-known works are his still lifes of packages, which feature intricate renderings of crumpled paper. One of those works, titled White Package and dating back to 1967, sold for more than $1m in 2004.

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A 1994 exhibition at the National Museum of Fine Arts in Chile attracted more than 280,000 visitors, ensuring Bravo’s notoriety in his native country.

Bravo died on 4 June 2011 in Taroudant, Morocco, of complications from epilepsy.

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