Guillermo Lorca García Huidobro, a renowned contemporary Chilean painter, at almost 40 years of age can boast of having become one of the most representative figures of the artistic style in which he works. It has not been easy to achieve this, since, as he said during the discussion we had, getting to this point is not exactly a path of roses.

To corroborate his success are the dozens of works he has created and some exhibitions such as “The Asprey” in London, “La vida Eterna” at the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Chile, or the one currently at the Moco Museum in Barcelona.

We talked to Guillermo about all this and more. Get to know him better below:

Hi Guillermo, how has the summer been? Have you been able to disconnect at some point?

Hi! The summer has been great, thank you. I’m very happy.

Unfortunately, I’m not on holiday, I’m working, so I haven’t been able to enjoy a few days of disconnection yet, but I hope to do it soon.

You are Chilean by birth, but where are you based now?

I’m currently between Barcelona and Santiago until further notice, fleeing from the virus season.

How do you see the situation of art in your country?

Not very well, to be honest. Museum-type institutions are at a very low point in terms of budget and spirit. The gallery market after the social crisis of 2019 and the pandemic ended up collapsing (they had already been in decline for years) and I estimate that there are less than half the number of galleries that there were 10 years ago. There are good artists in the country and people who want to enjoy it, but it’s not the best moment.

Is there an element of your country’s culture that can be found in your work?

I don’t think it’s obvious at first glance, but the culture of the countryside influenced my imagination a lot, especially the way I see animals and what it means for me to go.

The painting field, in which you work, is probably one of the most difficult. What do you think about it?

I don’t consider it as one of the most difficult fields. I can think of many others where I would go crazy. I love being an artist, but it’s indeed a sector where you don’t have many guides and it’s common to feel lost.

We’ve heard that you started creating quite young. Do you remember when you realised you wanted to do it? Can you tell us a bit about your career?

Yes, that’s right, around the age of 16 I realised that I wanted to be an artist, although it’s true that I had already had a loss of fanaticism between the ages of 8 and 11.

My career has always been focused on my absolute love for painting and details, without losing sight of the importance of expressiveness and complexity in each brushstroke.

Do you think that the fact that you are young may have worked against you? Did you find it difficult to be taken seriously and to progress? 

I haven’t had that problem for a long time, probably because I’m getting older (laughs).

From my point of view, I think it’s normal for young people to demand more of themselves to be taken seriously. In my case, at the beginning, I didn’t find it hard to win over a certain audience, but at the same time, I didn’t achieve the goals I thought I deserved. They played a dirty trick on me, as many of the works I exhibited have received the merit I am talking about years later. It has not been a bed of roses, but I have also been lucky and I have been able to take advantage of many of those lucky breaks.

In art, it is very important to have your own style. How would you define yours? What do you think sets you apart from the rest?

I would define my style within the world of figurative painting with a symbolist influence and perhaps some surrealism.  

I think many artists have something that distinguishes them from the majority. I have a sense that it has to do (regardless of the medium) with what has a deep meaning for you and whether you like it on multiple levels. You’ll see how the market responds, but I think that leap of faith is important.

Your works have caught the attention of many and are even exhibited at the famous Moco Museum. What does this mean to you?

It has been very satisfying to have achieved some of the goals I have set for myself in life and even more so to be aware of and grateful for it, which makes me feel even more proud of my achievements. The struggle to have a minimum of wisdom to surf this world and my brain that gives me no respite, without a doubt, is the hardest part.

Of all the works you have, do you have a favourite? If so, please tell us which one.

I always try to make my latest work my favourite as a personal motivation, but it’s not always possible. “Laura and the Dogs” and “Candy House” are some of my favourites, although I have others. I like them a lot.

The Asprey exhibition in London is another of your major milestones. How did you experience it?

It was certainly an interesting experience. The place was extraordinary, and the exhibition was very beautiful. However, I prefer exhibitions in more public places, and in that sense, I enjoyed the one at the Moco Museum more.

Are there any artists who have influenced you (artistically speaking)?

Many, such as Gustave Doré, Rembrandt, Franz Von Byros, Goya, Repin, Nerdrum, the symbolists and decadents in general, the pre-Raphaelites and the Victorians (especially Whaterhouse), and others. The list is too long for an answer.

Besides art, what other artistic discipline attracts your attention?

I love cinema and literature, and lately, literature even more.

Photographer: Yukka Podolskaya @the_yukka
Stylist: Ira Lan @Lan_ira
Styling Assistant: Kristina Liuta @krs_oleksandrivna