Iván Contreras Brunet

Santiago, Chile. 1927


Ivan Contreras Brunet, painter and sculptor (Santiago de Chile, February 19th, 1927).

He lives in Paris since 1952 where he has spent most of his career and where in 1968 founded Co-Mo (Constructivisme et Mouvement) an artistic movement that unites the work of other European and Latin American artists as Vantongerloo and Jesus Rafael Soto who revitalized the plastic trend started in 1913 by Russian Vladimir Tatlin and Alexander Rodchenko.

He lived in New York, United States, from 1957 to 1961 and returned to settle permanently in Paris in 1961.

Contreras Brunet was the first Chilean to represent his country at the Venice Biennale in 1972 and was also a member of the organizing committee for the Salon Comparisons that takes place in Paris since 1955, in which works of diverse trends of developing Visual Arts are shown.

In 1951 he began working on his first abstract pieces of kinetic kind.

In the struggle for finding core values for creative expression, Contreras-Brunet, choose the geometry as a grammar for his artistic language, ideally, trying to restore the lost order by establishing the horizontals and verticals of a mathematical landscape.

He has carefully investigated the effect of color on the moving parts and polychromed structures made of metal grids and it’s effect in the vision of the human eye.

He works with oil and acrylic paintings, watercolors also incorporating non traditional elements such as pieces of metal grids, wood, paper, and the use of airbrush or stencils.

He gives special emphasis on transparency and color, pure and simple shapes and subtle suggestions of light and movement in the search for essential forms to create a unique language that is both pictorial and mathematical.

He has made monumental creations integrated architecture in major European institutions and buildings: 1974: Facultad de Letras, Universidad de Nimega, Holanda (en colaboración con la Galería Nouvelles Images, La Haya). 1975: Recepción y restaurante OcÉ-Van der Grinten, Venlo, holanda (en colaboración con la Galería Nouvelles Images, La Haya). 1978: Sala del Consejo, Municipalidad de Maasluis, Holanda (en colaboración con la Galería Nouvelles Images, La Haya). 1979: Unión de Bancos Suizos, Lucerna, suiza. 1984: Cerámica sobre muros en la Avenida del Parque de Noisy-le-Grand, Marne-la-Vallée, Francia