Urbano artist

La primera labor

The first work

As a painter Urbano González Varela carried out a large number of works, in which emphasizes the mastery of tone and drawing, together with the high sensitivity of the artist. It was a great Dominator of the portrait which left excellent examples.

Of his paintings include “The first work” (possibly one of his best paintings), “The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, seen from la Herradura” (both in Vigo at home of one of the grandchildren of Urbano), “Homer”, “Hermosiña”, “The judgment of Paris” (parody of Rubens), “The blind man of the hurdy-gurdy” (these two recently mentioned, possibly outside Spain, shown two photographs taken at the time as (unfortunately, does not give us reason for the beautiful colours that gave them life), “Rebecca and Eliezer” (which won the first Grand medal offered by the city of A Coruña in the exposition of 1890), “Portrait of an old woman”, (in Madrid at home of one of their grandchildren; is dedicated to his friend Ovidio Murguía). Previously Murguia had dedicated his works to urban. As a portrait artist, some of his most significant paintings can be: “Portrait of Don Nicolas Villageliu” (urban commissioned by the Centro Gallego de La Habana, to honor its first President), “Portrait of her father-in-law General Don Julián García Reboredo” (in Vigo, home of relatives), “Portrait of Don Secundino González Valdés” (at the Museum of fine arts, A Coruña) , “Portrait of Don Daniel Carballo” (in the city of A Coruña, city of which the sitter was Mayor), “Portrait of don Román Pereiro” and “Portrait of don Alfredo Brañas Menéndez”.

La Catedral de Santiago vista desde La Herradura

The Cathedral of Santiago from La Herradura

The pictorial work of Urbano González, was praised in its entirety by art writers as illustrious as Alejandro Ferrant and other testimonies of the time, some of them from outside Spain.

A tangible example of his great skills as painter still can be enjoyed, watching the paintings in the ceiling of the Auditorium of the University of Santiago de Compostela, work that was entrusted to him by the Ministry of public instruction, in competition to the effect, whose bases were demanding three large canvases representing allegorical matters of wisdom, history, Sciences and the arts. This contest won it by unanimous vote of the jury, whose award there are certificates issued in his time that the custom.

Techo Paraninfo USC

USC Auditorium ceiling

Apart from this, many publications echoed, e.g., which devoted Magazine weekly illustrated 7th Havana, that, in an article of May 29, 1904, referring to urban, wrote: “It was one of the artistic directors of the reconstruction works of the University of Santiago, obtaining competition paintings of its main offices, whose jobs are currently”.

In the final realization of this work it was helped by the Valencian painter, based in Santiago de Compostela and his friend, Fenollera.

“Many years later, on March 17, 1984, in the newspaper”La Voz de Galicia”, academic of number of the Galician Academy of fine arts, John Naya Perez, wrote:” will not end by these notes without adding that Urbano González was a painter of originality and merit; his paintings are an excellent memory, which left his brushes in the Hall of the Auditorium of the University of Santiago, whose decoration was awarded in disputed contest is thus making justice to its undeniable merits”.

Sketches of this work, from its completion until the beginning of the 1950s, were held by Ms. Carmen Garcia Arbuthnot, widow of urban; by those dates were requested him on loan by the painter and critic Gamallo Fierros, who promised to return them as soon as possible, before two of the grandsons of the urban painter promise is never fulfilled to date.

On its merits as a painter, at meeting of the directive Board of the Academy of fine arts in A Coruña, on June 22, 1902, chaired by Don Jaime Ozores, Marquis of San Martín of Hombreiro, admitted him as a member of the same with the number 58; It says the Act: “the concept of drawing and painting to the Mr. Don Urbano González Varela, painter and Professor at the school of Arts and industries”.