Daniel Hernandez

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Biography of Daniel Hernandez ( 1856-1932 )

Born in Huancavelica, to a Peruvian mother and a Spanish father, Daniel Hernandez first made his artistic training in Lima with the Italian painter Leonardo Barbieri at the age of 14. Thanks to a grant obtained for his painting La mort de Socrate (The death of Socrates) in 1872, he left for Europe and settled in Italy. He joined the studio of Lorenzo Vallès, a Spanish painter living in Rome and studied classical painting closely. Hernandez lived for 10 years in Italy before moving to Paris where he stayed from 1883 to 1917. Uppon his arrival in Paris, he became President of the “Sociedad de Pintores Españoles”. 

In the French capital, he became friend with the Spanish artists who worked there, especially with the orientalist painters Fortuny, Villegas y Cordero and Pradilla y Ortiz. Among them, his palette became more and more colorful, illuminated by bright tones. He quickly gained success and exhibited regularly at the Paris’ Salon between 1893 and 1910. He received an honorable mention in 1899 and also the Silver Medal during the 1900’s Universal Exhibition. He also participated in the Munchen Exhibition in 1883, 1889, 1895 and 1899 and in Spanich Exhibitions in Barcelona in 1891 and 1894. In 1901 he was awarded the Legion of Honour. 
In 1912, he exhibited in Montevideo, Buenos Aires and Rome.

Daniel Hernandez painted many portraits, including the Queen of Spain and the Peruvian President which were exhibited at the Universal Exhibtion in Paris 1900. An artist gifted with an amazing technique, Daniel Hernandez realized brilliant paintings with smooth and light treatment. He made magnificent paintings of scenes of genre, allegories, landscapes and especially elegant women portraits. 

After WWI, he returned to Peru and was elected director of The National School of Fine Arts in Lima, where he worked until his death in 1932. Daniel Hernandez is one of the greatest Peruvian painters of his time and his work is reknown in Latin America as well as in Europe.

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