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Amelia Peláez


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(b. Yaguajay, Cuba, 1897; d. Havana, Cuba, 1968). She is one of the most significant female Cuban artists of the 20th century. Through her prolific career her work has included painting, drawing, fresco painting, and ceramics and is regarded as an instrumental figure in developing Cuban modernism by combining Cuban cultural traditions with aspects of European Modernism. She began her studies in fine arts at age fifteen and moved to Havana in 1916 to study at San Alejandro Academy under realist painter Leopoldo Romanach. She traveled to New York to study at the Art Students League in 1924 and then traveled to Paris in 1927, to continue her studies. At the Ecole de Beaux Arts and Ecole de Louvre she was introduced to art history and abstraction. She studied set design and color theory with Alexandra Exter a Russian Constructivist artist who became an important influence. While in Europe she also became interested in Gothic Architecture and traveled throughout Spain, Belgium and Holland.

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