JOSÉ ANTONIO SOROLLA GALLÉN BIO
Born in Onda (Castellón) Spain from a long line of Spanish pottery craftsmen, José Antonio Sorolla Gallén picked up his first paintbrush at the tender age of eleven. Not having received a formal education in studio arts, Gallén gathered considerable technical skill and invaluable aesthetic knowledge via observation and hands-on work in the family studios, painting and glazing ceramics.
A self-described ‘sponge’, his fascination with painting grew, and by the age of twenty, he was assiduously studying books and manuals on oil painting. His first foray at the easel resulted in an Expressionist period, using various media such as straw, paper, and hessian leftover from paint cans. Improvisation was exciting to the new painter, and not knowing the final result left him exhilarated and especially eager to broaden all possibilities.
His painting stages were liberated without abrupt change and smoothly linked in transition, where one style gently emancipated itself from the former. Just when things got ‘easy’, or after a long time immersed in the same series, he would grow restless and seek new horizons to explore. He states; “I have always liked to drink from different fountains, as we say in Spanish”.
The shift to figurative painting seemed natural in evolution, as he has consistently desired to challenge himself methodologically and intellectually. His current influences are from the figurative periods of Gerhard Richter and Edward Hopper, likening the images to still frames from a movie screen.
In the midst of a contemporary photorealistic phase, Gallén is working simultaneously with nature and the human form. His subjects are found through his camera lens, painstakingly and theatrically positioned in the foreground of immense skies and seascapes. At other times, he catches his subjects quite candidly in natural poses, which strikes him as honest and endearing; the weary slouch of a shoulder, a lazily bent knee, faded denim awash in vivid sunlight, or a group of tourists gazing idly at a cloudy ocean panorama.
Exhibiting internationally and selling successfully since 1983, painting has been the only vocation and livelihood Gallén has known. This is a veritable testament to his inherent gift of relating viscerally and visually to art buyers across the span of three decades...a rare occurrence in today’s competitive art world.
Selected Group & Solo Exhibitions
2018 Art Miami, Landau Fine Art
2018 Solo exhibition, Landau Fine Art
2017 Galleri Kim Anstensen, Gothenburg
2015 Galerie Atzenhofer, Nuremberg
2014 Cynthia Noura Art Gallery, Beirut
2014 Mayer Fine Art, Norfolk
2013 Formats d'hiver, Galleri Kim Anstensen, Gothenburg
2013 Solo exhibition, Cynthia Noura Art Gallery, Beirut
2012 Caution! Not a photo! Lazarev Gallery, St. Petersberg
2012 Exposition spécial Noël, Daniel Besseiche Gallery, Knokke-Le Zoute
2012 Solo exhibition, Gallery Fineart, Moscow
2012 Solo exhibition, Galleri Kim Anstensen, Gothenburg
2011 Small Format. El Quatre sala d'art de Granollers, Barcelona
2011 Le Siants Galerie, Barcelona
2010 Le Siants Galerie, Prague
2009 Una mirada plural, Centre Cultural Palau de Vivel, Vall de Uxó, Spain
2009 L'Algepsar Gallery, Castellón
2008 Solo exhibition, L'Algepsar Gallery, Castellón
2008 Solo exhibition, Molí de la Reixa. Onda Exhibition Hall, Castellón
2007 Solo exhibition, Museo de la Baronia, Ribesalbes
2005 Amicia e Arte, El Museu del Taulell 'Manolo Safont' de Onda and Fiorano, Italy
2002 Retrospective, Fundación Caja Castellón, Onda Exhibition Hall and Sala de Exposiciones Casa de Cultura, Castellón
2001 Asensi Gallery, Castellón
1998 Solo exhibition, Onda Exhibition Hall, Castellón
1996 L'Art i L'Home, Second Cycle, Centre Cultural Polivalent, Fundació Caixa Castelló, La Vall D’Uixó, Castellón
1995 Del Este Gallery, Valencia
1994 Galeria Octubre, Jaume I University, Castellón
1994 First Festival, Arte del Desecho, Parque Ribalta, Castellón
1993 Torres Begué Gallery, Madrid
1990 Solo exhibition, Sueras City Hall, Castellón
1989 Solo exhibition, Pictograma Gallery, Castellón
1986 Caja Rural, Vila-Real
1985 Solo exhibition, Trassos Gallery, Castellón
1983 Onda Town Hall, Castellón