Rafael Coronel
Rafael Coronel

(1931 – 2019)

Rafael Coronel Arroyo, born on October 24, 1931, in Zacatecas, Mexico, was a renowned Mexican artist. From an early age, he showed a great interest and talent in the visual arts, which led him to pursue painting and sculpture.

Coronel studied at the National School of Painting, Sculpture, and Engraving "La Esmeralda" in Mexico City, where he had the opportunity to learn from renowned masters such as Rufino Tamayo and Francisco Zúñiga. His artistic style was influenced by various movements, including expressionism and magical realism, while also incorporating elements from his Mexican culture.

Throughout his career, Rafael Coronel was known for his ability to capture human emotion in his works. His paintings and sculptures convey the essence and fragility of the human being, exploring themes such as loneliness, suffering, and joy. His portraits, in particular, are highly regarded for their powerful representation of the human figure.

Coronel received numerous awards and recognitions during his lifetime. In 1966, he won the National Prize for Arts and Sciences in the field of Fine Arts in Mexico. His works were exhibited in important galleries and museums around the world, including the Museum of Modern Art in Mexico, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Monterrey, and the Museum of Latin American Art in Buenos Aires.

In addition to his artistic career, Coronel was also a great collector of Mexican folk art. Throughout his life, he amassed a vast collection of masks, toys, textiles, and folk art objects from various regions of Mexico. This collection became the foundation of the Rafael Coronel Museum in Zacatecas, which opened its doors in 1983 and houses one of the most significant collections of folk art in the country.

Rafael Coronel Arroyo passed away on May 7, 2019, leaving behind a lasting artistic legacy and a valuable contribution to Mexican culture. His works continue to be admired and studied for their unique style and their ability to convey the depth of the human experience through art.