Roberto Matta

Roberto Sebastián Antonio Matta Echaurren better known as Roberto Matta, was one of Chile's best-known painters and a seminal figure in 20th century abstract expressionist and surrealist art across  America and Europe.

Born in 1935 in Santiago de Chile, he studied architecture and interior design at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile in Santiago and graduated in 1935. That spring, he travelled from Peru to Panama and completed surreal drawings of many of the geographical features he witnessed. He first encountered Europe while serving in the Merchant Marine after graduating. His travels in Europe and the USA led him to meet artists such as Arshile Gorky, René Magritte, Salvador Dalí, André Breton, and Le Corbusier.

In his art Matta creates new dimensions in a blend of organic and cosmic lifeforms. He was one of the first artists to take this abstract leap (biomorphism). Throughout his life, Matta worked with many different types of media, including ceramic, photography, screen printing, lithography, and video production. Matta died in Civitavecchia, Italy on 23 November 2002, eleven days after his 91st birthday.