López-Herrera, Paisaje urbano, oil on wood, 195 x 104 cm, 77 x 41 inches


The Pictorial and the Magic of the Represented

Everything hovers,without placing, keeping the initial impulse, just like in the moment the painting began to be made from the original chaos. That beat and that preservation of the primordial condition give life to th painting, which is chaos no longer, but an organized universe. However, its order – its composition – is so spontaneous that it allows for the realization of the irreppressible tendency of López Herrera, its author, to the irrational, to the unreal and the mysterious, to the experimentation and to the surprise. Because the works on associative compositions where an apparent totally realistic language lives together with an universe of evident magic. On his latest works, the painter has even allowed “undone” parts, or areas, to oppose others of an hyper-realism that comes close to the “trompe l´oleil” and to those other magnificent background spaces that are defined by the power of the sole pictorial matter and its richest textures. Through those areas, the artist brings our perception back to the strange hinge where intelligence´s coldness and the obscure sense of things cease to be opposed; toys, coarse vases, characters-puppets, playing cards, flowers, postcards and portraits, masks, cloks, birds….As modern poetic “vanitates”, once López Herrera feels and transmits “the attraction of the abyss” which, in the words of Thomas Mann, is characteristic to the modern.

The passage from the real to the pictorial, and from the pictorial to the unreal and to the irrationality of the poetic, that is always produced in these paintings, leans on Manuel López Herrera virtuosity, on his technique with a particular skill to manipulate the effects without permitting them to overcome the pictorial: the forms, the stains, the colour, the light. Here, the issue is that we can perceiver simultaneously the essential nature of painting and the nature of the reality it represents. To achieve this, besides the associative composition and the characteristics of a rich impastes painting. López Herrera uses the resources of drawing analysis. A drawing so intense and exhaustive that it shows us how the mysterious and the common are so intimately intertwined.

So many different aspects make it difficult to classify this work. Never mind. It is stays clear, however, that hyper-realism and surrealism keep a close linguistic relationship between themselves and that, in paintings like López Herrera´s, this relationship produces the intensification of the pictorial and of the magic of the represented.

José Marin-Medina
Art Critic



Galería Van – Dyck – Gijón
Galería Kreisler – Madrid

Omniums-Ars – Gerona – España.
Kalon – Tudela

Galería Utrecht – Utrecht
Galería Haurie – Sevilla

Galería Van Dyck – Gijón

Galería Utrecht
Arte Lancia – León
Galería Kreisler – Madrid
Galería Maravia – Cordoba (colectiva)

Galería Utrecht – Holanda
Galería Samagra – Paris

Galería Van-Dyck – Gijón
Galerie Samagra – Paris (colectiva)

Galería Utrecht – Holanda
Galería Kreisler – Madrid

Galería Centro Arte – León
Galería Dos Coimbras – Braga

Galería Van-Dyck – Gijón
Galería Echeverría – S.Sebastian
Galeria Kandinsky  S. José de Costa Rica – Realismo Español (colectiva)

Sala de Exposiciones del Palacio de Pimentel – Valladolid
Galería Kreisler – Madrid

Galería Dos Coimbras – Braga
Stricoff Fine Art – New York (colectiva)

Galería Lierhrnann – Lieja
Galería de Arte Juan Manuel Lumbreras – Bilbao

Galería de arte Alfama- Madrid
Galería de Arte Mario Sequeira – Braga
Embryo Gallery – Leuven – Bruselas –  (colectiva)

Galería Mario Sequeira – Braga – Portugal
Galería Kandinsky – S. José de Costa Rica

lópez herrera awards

Reina Sofia special prize
AutumnFair, Madrid
HonourMedal, BMW Painting Prize
Ist Prize National painting contest, Town of Tudela
PrizeJacobo, Roma
Ist Prize Plastic Arts Exhibition, Valdepeñas
D.G. Bellas Artes Prize, Spring Exhibition Seville
Ist Prize. Painting Army
Ist Prize.Spanish – Portuguese Painting Exhibition.

lópez herrera collections and museums
Art Funds of the Palmaos Tows Council – Spain.
Cau de la Costa Brava Municipal Museum – Spain.
Sport Royal Federation of LLeida – Spain.
Cultural Foundation of the Savings Bank of Leon – Spain.
Tow may of Avila – Spain.
Pontevedra Country Council Museum – Spain.
Ateneo of Seville Museum – Spain.
Nativity Scene Art Museum, Valladolid – Spain.
Puertollano Municipal Museum of Art Ciudad Real – Spain.
Seville Country Council Museum of Oviedo (Velarde Palace) Spain.
Ponde Museum. San Juan de Puerto Rico.
Contemporary Art Museum. Osaka – Japan.
Valdepeñas Art Museum. Ciudad Real – Spain.
Art Museum of Torrelaguna – Spain
Art Funds of the Valladolid Town Council Spain.
Archaeological Museum of Alcala de Henares – Spain