Last January 4th, the artist-painter and excellent friend Josť Villanueva Berruezo left us in Madrid, whose life, truly free, within his vital and pictorial conception, was one of his most significant referents. Friend from the time of our studies of Baccalaureate in Lleida, where he was born, our personal courses maintained a sincere harmony in terms of the Humanities (He was a deep connoisseur of the ancient history of Rome and I a professor, precisely of Ancient History) and above all with respect to Art. He was an artist with multiple plastic resources and I an admirer of his varied artistic career. He started it in Paris, where, from a very young age, he would coexist with the existentialist pictorial environment of the 60s, forming part of his personality in the famous Plaza del Tertre. From there, already with a solid artistic and personal background, he left for other cities in northern Europe, making known his special way of understanding the artistic work, not subject to academicisms or passing fashions. From those countries he returned to Spain, fixing his residence first in several Andalusian cities, then in his hometown and finally in Madrid, being well known as one of the most significant artists of the Plaza Mayor. His work, of very broad and rich themes (today in Museums and private collections), characterized by color, by the force of the strokes and above all by his message, never left indifferent all those who have contemplated and enjoyed it.
I would like to emphasize, in addition to canvases of great size, with urban landscapes, marine and even bullfighting, the compositions of social theme in which the dialectic between form and meaning crossed the canvas to enter psychological domains.
With these words, dictated by the affection and the memory of a friend, I want to leave a record and memory of Josť Villanueva, who lived only to do what he wanted most: to be an artist.
Federico Lara Peinado
Jose Villanueva Berruezo
Born in Lleida on May 18, 1941
Passed away in Madrid on January 4, 2018