Gustavo Montoya

"Niña con Paloma" Portrait of a Seated Girl in a Blue Dress Holding a Dove 20th Century



Oil, Canvas


Portrait of a young girl in a light blue dress accompanied by a small white dove in her lap. The little girl is barefoot and seated on a deep blue chair, a staple of his paintings, that is placed in the center of the composition. Gustavo Montoya created a number of unique portraits depicting young girls and boys (Niña's & Niño's) who he believed represented the beautiful children of Mexico. The oil painting is signed by the artist on the lower right corner and is great condition. The portrait is displayed in a beautiful gold frame and white matting that wonderfully accentuates the composition. A gallery stamp from the Galeria Teresa Haas SA (Mexico City, Mexico) is recognizable on the back of the frame.

Artist Biography

Gustavo Montoya was born in Mexico City on July 9, 1905. At the age of 13 he studied painting at the Academia de San Carlos. Some of his teachers were: German Gedovius, Roberto Montenegro, Leandro Izaguirre, Francisco de la Torre, Mateo Herrera and Juan de Mata Pacheco, among others. He stated that the school had only taught him the technique of art, but not the spirit of it and therefore he considered himself a self-taught artist. He married his first wife, Luz Saavedra. In 1929 he traveled to Los Angeles, California, where he worked illustrating posters at the West Coast Theaters Co. The couple had a daughter, Rosa Elena Montoya Saavedra. The marriage did not last long, and Gustavo Montoya returned to Mexico in 1933. In 1936 he entered the Escuela Nacional de Artes Plásticas (National School of Visual Arts) as teacher of the color class. He married a second time to the painter Cordelia Urueta, with whom he moved to Paris in 1938 to study European avant-garde art. He visited museums, galleries, and painters' studios. He toured Switzerland, Italy and England. In 1939, due to the Second World War, Montoya and his wife were forced to leave for New York where they remained for several years. Exhibited at the Alma Reed Gallery. When they returned to Mexico in 1942, Gustavo Montoya joined the Mexican neo-realist school movement. In 1953 he entered again as a teacher at the Escuela Nacional de Artes Plásticas. In 1965 Gustavo Montoya and Cordelia Urueta divorced after 26 years of marriage. He was lonely and did not engage in artistic circles. He was a founding member of the League of Revolutionary Writers and Artists along with Cordelia Urueta and others. Also, he was a founding member of the Salón de la Plástica Mexicana. He spent most of his professional career depicting the streets of Mexico and its inhabitants. He painted still lifes, street scenes, churches, children, women, and markets in Mexico. Montoya preferred to paint the poor and working class, considering them the most authentic class in Mexico City. He liked to do his work in series around one main idea. Some of his series were: The streets of Mexico, Mexican still lifes, Mexican children, Dreams, Walls, Chess, Allegory of transformation, among others. Gustavo Montoya died on July 12, 2003 in Mexico City, at the age of 98 years. Provenance: From a Private Collection in Houston, Texas.

Dimensions With Frame

H 38 in. x W 28 in. x D 3 in.

Dimensions Without Frame

H 24 in. x W 18 in.
"Niña con Paloma" Portrait of a Seated Girl in a Blue Dress Holding a Dove 20th Century
"Niña con Paloma" Portrait of a Seated Girl in a Blue Dress Holding a Dove 20th Century