Angeles Ballester

Angeles, as she is affectionately called, has the distinction of being one of the first women from Spain to make her mark internationally in the world of painting. She graduated as the only woman from the Real Academia de Bellas Artes San Carlos in 1950. She was one of original members of the Group Los Siete, who were honored in a 1996 retrospective exhibition (Valencia) of Valencian painters whose careers started in the 1950s. Her work is divided into three periods: Spanish, South American (Caracas 1957-1960), and American (1960-present). She was one of the very first women from Spain to have a solo exhibition of her work in the United States (1961-Galerie Internationale-New York City).

TITLE: Descent From the Cross
Medium: oil over tempera on masonite, 85cm. X 100cm., 33in. X 39in. 1954
O Head so sorely wounded,
Defiled and put to scorn,
O sacred Head surrounded
By mocking crown of thorn,
O Head, adored and honoured,
So lovely fair to see,
But now so low degraded,
I greet and treasure Thee.
Chorus: The Passion of Our Lord According to St. Matthew,
Johann Sebastian Bach

Angeles is a Renaissance woman of our age; trained since age 11 in a classical European art tradition, versed in the mythology of Antiquity, understanding thoroughly the foundations of Spanish, European and world history, and keenly aware of current events. She is a woman of today who transmits and interprets the past as well as illustrates her perceptions of contemporary life. Her life has been filled with correspondence and accolades from such cultural luminaries as Josef von Sternberg, Ramon Sender, Alicia de la Rocha, Pete Seeger, la Condesa de Campo Alange, and Juan Antonio Samaranch. It was Sender who termed her work “vital or vitalistic.” He continued that ” … harmony is the result, at the same time intelligent and naive, of all levels of sensitivity. Her painting is life itself, an inspired synthesis of that human complexity which we are and in which we exist.” The work of Angeles has been used for UNICEF cards and calendars, and illustrates Marie Seton’s biography – Sergei Eisenstein (1987 – Dobson Books, Ltd., London).

A lovely photo of Angeles Ballester, the first woman artist from Spain who ever had a one artist exhibition in America (1961 Galerie Internationale, New York City) and who is represented exclusively by Froebel Gallery.
Photo by Jose Alarico Ballester, brother of artist Valencia, Spain 1949, First place in KODAK COMPETITION in Valencia.

Biographical Highlights

1950 – graduates as only woman from the Real Academia de Bellas Artes San Carlos, Valencia (Spain)
1951 – selected to participate in the 1st Biennale of Art of the Kingdom of Valencia
1952 – interview on Spanish National Radio
– Madrid National Contest – National Library (Madrid)
1953 – founder and member of the group Los Siete
– designs sets for Christmas Altarpiece, a musical play by composer, Matilde Salvador (Teatro Nacional – Valencia)
1954 – sets for the ballet group of Artemis Markessinis
1955 – one-artist show Galeria Alfil (Madrid)
– interview on Spanish National Radio with art critic, Antonio Manuel Compoy
1956 – 2nd Bienal Hispanoamericana de Arte (Barcelona)
1957 – one-artist show at the British Institute (Caracas, Venezuela); opened by British Ambassador Sir John Walker
1958 – one-artist show at Museum of Fine Arts (Maracaibo, Venezuela)
– 1st National Exhibition at Museum of Fine Arts (Caracas)
1959 – one-artist show at Museum of Fine Arts (Caracas)
1960 – 1st Group Exhibition at Galerie Internationale (New York City)
1961 – one-woman show at Galerie Internationale (New York City)
1962 – one-artist show, University of New Mexico (Albuquerque)
1963 – one-artist show, University of New Hampshire (Durham)
– IV March Salon, Valencia (Spain)
1964 – one-artist show, Oberlin College (Ohio, USA)
1965 – National Exhibition (Indianapolis, Indiana)
1967 – UNICEF calendar and holiday cards – Girl With Dove (United Nations – NYC)
1971 – Contemporary American Art – Artists USA (chosen for yearbook)
1972 – one-artist show, Universidad San Agustin (Arequipa, Peru)
1973 – one-artist show, Universidad San Marcos (Lima, Peru)
1974 – chosen for yearbook Printmakers, published by Contemporary American Art
1975 – one-artist show, Library of Rosslyn Heights (Long Island)
1976 – one-artist show, Elizabeth Seton Library (Riverdale, New York)
1977 – organizer and art director of exhibitions for Hispanic Heritage Week of New York State (Albany, New York)
1978 – illustrations for the journal Democratic Women (Madrid, Spain)
1980 – Friends Of UNESCO, travelling exhibition (Valencia, Barcelona, Zaragoza, Madrid-Spain)
1981 – illustrations for the cultural journal Progreso (New York City)
1982 – exhibition at Lynn Cotler Galleries (New York City)
1983 – group exhibition, Galerie Internationale (NYC)
1984 – individual exhibition, New York State Museum (Albany, New York)
1986 – individual exhibition at TOB Galleries, curators John Froebel-Parker and Maria de las Nieves Gonzalez Montejano
1987 – appears in Marie Seton’s biography Sergei Eisenstein
1989 – illustrates journal Zurgai, dedicated to Spanish poet Antonio Machado (Bilbao, Spain)
1990 – individual exhibitions at Federal Building (Albany, NY) and Galeria Grupo Arte (Madrid-Albany), curators John Froebel-Parker and Maria de las Nieves Gonzalez Montejano
– illustrations for premier issues of Art & Understanding, America’s first magazine dedicated to the art and literature of HIV/AIDS
1991 – retrospective at Galeria Grupo Arte (Madrid-Albany), curated by John Froebel-Parker and Maria de las Nieves Gonzalez Montejano
1992 – Homage To Marlene Dietrich, group show at Grupo Arte (Madrid-Albany) dedicated to the late actress (Angeles had been long-time correspondent with director, Josef von Sternberg)
1993 – 1996 (international treatment for glaucoma and recuperation)
1996 – exhibition in Valencia dedicated to important Valencian artists starting in the 1950s. Inaugurated by HRH Sofia, Queen of Spain
1997 – Drawings From The Academy, Froebel Gallery (Albany, New York); drawings on classical themes executed by the artist between the ages of 11-14
– Drawings From The Academy, Albany Public Library (Albany)

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