Biographies

A – D

Manuel Aldunate (1815-1904)

Manuel Aldunate Avaria was born in Santiago in 1815. He was an architect and a town planner. In 1938 he participates in the war against the Peruvian-Bolivian Confederation and, one year later, he registers in the architecture course that was given by the Instituto Nacional. Afterwards, in 1860, he finishes his studies in France, supported by the Chilean government at the time.

In 1861 he returns to the country and is appointed the architect of the Ministry of Industries and Public Works and participates in important projects. In 1865, he takes on the Professorship of Architecture in the University of Chile. In 1872 he resigns to the Ministerial position, but continues to participate in government projects.

Among his most outstanding works is the construction of the Central Farmers’ Market of Santiago, the Palace of the Alhambra, and the Urmeneta Palace. He works in the construction of the National Congress and in the works of the Temple of the Recoleta Dominica.

He dies in Santiago in 1904.

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Claude-François Brunet des Baines (1799-1855)

Claude Brunet de Baines was born in Vannes, France in 1799. He comes from a family of architects, and studied in the School of Fine Arts of Paris.

He was president of the Council of Architects of Paris, inspector of public works and an expert in historical monuments.

In 1848 he arrives to Chile, hired by the government of President Manuel Bulnes, to exercise as the Architect of the Government. Once in Chile, Brunet de Baines conducts all dealings for the to teach the Architecture Class of the University Section of the National Institute and in 1849 presents the foundation project and takes on its direction for seven years, marking the origin of the School of Architecture of the University of Chile. In addition, he is the author of the first manual for teaching the career, sharing all his knowledge, so that the students can be formed with a conceptual and theoretic support.

His architecture is a neoclassical style and among his most outstanding works are the construction of the Congress Palace, the Municipal Theater, the Palace of the Archbishopric, the Church of La Veracruz and the house of President Manuel Bulnes, among others. He dies in Santiago Chile in 1855.

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Eusebio Chelli (1820 – ¿?)

Eusebio Chelli was born in Rome, Italy, in 1820. He comes from a family of artists and in 1834 he enters the Academy Pontificia de Saint Lucas and is a disciple of Luigi Poletti.

In 1853 he arrives to Chile with the high altar that the Dominican Fathers of the Recoleta Dominica had entrusted. Amazed by the wonderful work done by Chelli, he is entrusted with the building of the new temple worthy of the high altar.

Chelli, representative of the neoclassical style develops his career in Santiago, leaving an architectonic legacy to the city. Among his works the most outstanding are the Temple of the Recoleta Dominica, the Church of las Agustinas, Church of la Preciosa Sangre, Church of el Buen Pastor, Errázuriz Urmeneta Palace and the works in the Metropolitan Cathedral, among others.

There is no exact date regarding his death, however it is said that he died in a lunatic asylum in Paris.

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Marta Colvin (1917-1995)

Marta Colvin was a sculptor born in Chillán on June 22, 1917 and died in Santiago on October 27, 1995.

She started her studies in the School of Fine Arts of the University of Chile in 1937 and some years later, was an auxiliary professor in the sculpture workshop. In 1948, she traveled on a scholarship to Paris to continue her artistic formation in the Grand Chaumiere Academy and in La Sorbonne.

In England she was a student of the famous sculptor Henry Moore, who supervised her studies and taught her how to value the cultural pre-Columbian tradition. She lived more than thirty years in France, but returned to Chile to be a professor and continue her art works.

Marta Colvin handled in a very skillful manner the techniques of stone sculpturing, bronze casting and wood roughing, being the last-mentioned a characteristic of her works. She was awarded the National Art Award (1970) for the “Americanistic nature of her work “.

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Ignazio Cremonesi (1862 – 1937).

He was born in Rome on July 30, 1862 and dies in the same city on June 9, 1937.
He studied Architecture and Decorative Arts in Rome. In 1889 he arrives to Chile, were he is a resident for fourteen years.

He dedicates himself to teaching for ten years as an architecture professor in the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile and when he filed his resignation, to return to Italy, he receives the degree as Honorary Professor of the University of Santiago.

In Chile he also practices as an architect and was in charge of the beautification of the Cathedral of Santiago, in the construction of the Casa Central of the Catholic University of Chile, the Church of los Santos Ángeles Custodios, Church of Saint Isidro Labrador, among other works.

He actively participates with the resident Italian colony, which is why the Italian Foreign Office names him Knight of the Crown of Italy in 1903.

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Emilio Doyère

Emilio Doyère entered the School of Fine Arts in Paris in 1863. He arrives in Chile in 1890 after having collaborated with great European architects, among them Emile Boeswildwald, and performing several restorations, such as the Cathedral of Bayona, he is the main responsible party for introducing Gothic historicism in Chile, and as a advocate of the ideas of Viollet- le Duc in terms of architectonic restoration. He is professor of the University of Chile. He was the creator of several buildings in Santiago, outstanding the Church of the Holy Sacrament of the Congregation of the Good Shepherd, the Church of Saint Peter and the Palace of the Courts of Law.

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E – H

Félix Gaudin (1851-1930)

Félix Gaudin was born en Paris on February 10, 1851 and died on September 15, 1930 in Corcelle. He is an outstanding painter and stained glass window maker.

When the war started in 1870 he joins the army becoming an official. Around 1879 he receives an inheritance and becomes the head of a stained glass window company that employs twelve people. His skills as a leader, his entrepreneurial scent and innovation allow this small company to quickly become one of the largest stained glass window companies of Clermont-Ferrand.

The workshop receives orders from religious buildings and private houses not only in France, but also in the United States, Central America and South America, such as the windows of the Teatro Colón of Buenos Aires and the Cathedral of Santa Fe in New Mexico, just a few famous examples. In Chile, we can observe the stained glass windows of the Church of Saint Philomena.

He participated in exhibits in France and abroad and in 1890 buys a workshop in Paris to settle in a definite manner in the French capital.

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Juan José de Goycoolea (1762-1831)

Juan José de Goycoolea was born en Santiago in September 1762, son of Juan Ignacio Goycoolea and Teresa Zañartu.

At twenty years old he gets his degree in norms and laws in the University of Saint Felipe, as well as that of a surveyor. He is the disciple of the Italian architect Joaquín Toesca, and acquires the necessary knowledge that allows him to continue with the inconclusive works of his master.

Upon the death of Toesca, he takes on the direction of the construction of the Cathedral of Santiago and the Casa de Moneda (Chilean Mint). His main works are: The Church of La Estampa Volada, the Church of Saint Ana, the Royal Audience Palace (currently the National Historical Museum) and the Royal Palace of the Tribunal of the Consulate, building that was demolished approximately in 1925.

There is no information available regarding his death.

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Gabriel Guarda (1928- )

Fernando Guarda Geywitz was born in 1928 in the city of Valdivia, Chile. He was the Abbé of the Benedictine Monastery, historian and architect and was awarded the National History Award in 1984 and of the Bicentennial Award in 2003. He comes from a Catholic family and studies Architecture in the Catholic University of Chile in 1947 and, fifteen days after receiving his degree in 1958, enters the Benedictine Order from where he is ordained as a priest in 1968, changing his name to Gabriel Guarda. During his religious formation, he studied theology and philosophy. He was a professor in the Catholic University of Chile, teaching classes in History of the Church in the School of Theology and Urban History in the School of Architecture, in addition to continuing with his historical knowledge by searching in files and documents in the National Library. He is a great researcher and accumulates numerous publications regarding urban and architectonic history, contributing towards the preservation, understanding and disclosure of the cultural patrimony of the country. Among his most exceptional publications there are the “Historia de Valdivia,” (History of Valdivia) “La ciudad chilena del siglo XVIII,” (the Chilean city of the XVIII Century) “La economía de Chile austral antes de la colonización alemana (1645 – 1850),” (The Austral Economy of Chile before the German Colonization (1645 – 1850)), “Historia Urbana del Reino de Chile,” (Urban History of the Kingdom of Chile) “El arquitecto de La Moneda Joaquín Toesca. Una imagen del imperio Español en América,” (the Architect of La Moneda (the Mint), Joaquin Toesca. An Image of the Spanish Empire in America); “Nueva historia de Valdivia,” (New History of Valdivia), among others.

Between 1961 and 1962 he designs the Church of the Benedictine Monastery along with Father Martín Correa, icon of the modern architecture in Chile.

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I – L

Eugène Joannon (1860 – 1938)

Eugène Joannon Crozier was born in Lyon, France in 1860. Afterwards, he graduated as an engineer and studied architecture at the École de Beaux Arts de Paris.

He arrives to Chile in 1889, contacted by the government of the time, to carry out some public works, and must face many difficulties, such as seisms and less economic resources to carry out his works. In this respect, his constructions are cleaner and with his knowledge of calculating the resistance of materials, he develops anti-seismic technologies, using slabs between floors and structured concrete, allowing the construction of higher buildings.

Joannon decides to stay in Chile and is contracted as the architect of the Archbishopric. He held this position for more than twenty-five years and built numerous and beautiful churches.

His architecture is in an eclectic style and reflects the neo-Gothic and neoclassical style. Among its most outstanding works are the Church of Santa Philomena, the Church of Corpus Dómini, The Church of Our Lady of Victory (Iglesia Nuestra Señora de la Victoria), the Edwards Commercial Building, among others.

Joannon was one of the founders of the Central Architects’ Association and the School of Architecture of the Catholic University, where he was a teacher. He died in Santiago in 1938.

 

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M – P

Juan Martínez (1901 – 1971)

Juan Martínez Gutiérrez was born in Bilbao, Spain, on February 8, 1901. He was an architect and a painter. He arrives to Buenos Aires, Argentina in 1907, due to his father’s work and in 1909 they settled in Chile. In 1918 he enters the School of Architecture of the University of Chile and, in parallel, he studies painting in the School of Fine Arts. He is an architect, painter and professor of architecture. In 1923 he was appointed Vice-Chancellor of the School of Architecture of the University of Chile.

Among his most outstanding works is the construction of the School of Law of the University of Chile, the School of Medicine of the University of Chile, the Military School of Santiago and the Votive Temple of Maipu.

Juan Martínez represents modern architecture, integrating concepts of monumentality with national and functional principles. In 1969 he is awarded the National Architecture Award. He dies in Santiago in 1971.
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Nicanor Plaza (1844-1918)

He was a sculptor born in Santiago in 1844 and died in Florence on December 7, 1918.

In 1858, he entered the first generation sculpture course of the recently inaugurated Academy, under the wings of the Frenchman Augusto François, first professor of the subject in Chile. Plaza was the first to receive a scholarship from the government to continue his studies in France; thus, in 1863 he started his classes with Francisco Jouffroy in Paris. Later on he returns to Chile to take on the position as Vice-Chancellor of the Academy of Fine Arts of Santiago, in 1873. He then settles in Paris in 1900 and, later he moves to Italy, where he dies.

His work is characterized by an aesthetic conception, technical execution and a subject direction with a clear academic trend. Therefore, he absolutely dominated the craft, both in the direct sculpting of marble as well as bronze casting and mainly concentrating on allegorical and historical topics, Plaza sought the perfection of forms. Nicanor Plaza belongs to the first generation of Chilean sculptures and therefore, he is considered along with José Miguel Blanco, a forerunner.

 

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Q – T

Karl Stegmöller

He was born in Germany on August 27. In 1850 he arrives to Chile. He is an engineer and architect by profession. In 1854 he was the engineer who drafted the Railroad, additionally teaching private drawing classes.

He formed part of the scientific group of the provisory Commission of the boulevard of the Saint Lucia Hill during its urbanization. He participated in the construction of several Chilean public works, among them the following can be highlighted: the railroad between Santiago and Valparaiso; Leper House and the Saint Vincent de Paul Chapel in 1875 and the Church of the Sisters of Providence in Valparaíso 1880 (church that was devastated by the 1906 earthquake), among others.

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Joaquín Toesca (1752-1799)

Joaquín Toesca (Gioachino Francesco Toesca y Ricci), was born on April 1, 1752 in Rome, Italy. He was the son of Giuseppe Toesca and María Ricci, and dies in Santiago Chile on June 11, 1799. He begins his studies in architecture at a very early age, under the direction of re-known Italian architect Francesco Sabatini. He supplements the practice acquired with Sabatini, with studies in the Royal Academy of Barcelona, the Academy of Saint Lucas of Rome and the Royal Academy of Fine Arts of Saint Fernando in Madrid. Between 1976 and 1979, in parallel with his studies in Madrid, he participated in several works along with his master, Sabatini, who worked for the Spanish court.

In 1780, Toesca arrives to Chile thanks to the dealings of the Bishop at the time, Manuel de Alday, who knew the Italian Abbé Pietro Toesca and on mentioning the on-going problem with the building of the Cathedral of Santiago, the Abbé suggests contracting his brother who is an architect. Once in Chile, Toesca designs the construction of the Cathedral, the Casa de Moneda (Mint House), the Cabildo of Santiago, the building of the Hospital Saint Juan de Dios and the cutwaters of the city, among other works, capturing all the strength of the neoclassical style in his projects. The number of works entrusted increase and, additionally, he forms his own disciples. He is behind the changes to the urban landscape of the capital, marking a before and after in the national architecture.

Toesca dies without seeing the Cathedral finished. His human remains are buried in the Church of San Francisco.

 

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V – Z

Fermín Vivaceta (1827-1890)

Fermín Vivaceta Rupio was born in Santiago in 1827. He is the son of Fermín Vivaceta, an Argentinean who arrived to Chile with the Liberation Army and Juana Rupio.

He is a Chilean architect, cabinet maker and professor. Descendent from a working family, he started to work when he was 11 years old as an apprentice in a cabinet maker workshop, while he studied at night. In 1846, he starts to study lineal drawing in the National Institute, supplementing this knowledge with studies in Geometry and Mathematics. Thanks to this knowledge he dedicated most of his life to teaching, training workers. In 1850 he was a student of the French architect Claude Brunet de Baines and the style of his constructions show the influence of his master. He was in charge of numerous works, among them, in Santiago, the building of the University of Chile, the Chapel of Chuchunco, the Church of Carmen Alto, the Tower of the Church of San Francisco, the towers of the churches of Saint Agustin, Saint Rafael and the Franciscan Recoleta, among others.

In 1862 he establishes the Sociedad de Unión de Artesanos (the Handicraft Workers’ Union Association), in order to join efforts and create mutual aid among the workers, and particularly, to train them. Similarly, in 1877, he establishes the Asociación de Trabajadores (Workers’ Association), to build worthy housing for people and thus eliminate tenements.

Fermín Vivaceta dies in February 1890.

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Pedro Vogl (1692- ¿?)

Pedro Vogl o Foguer was born in Wetterhausen on November 15, 1692. He is a Jesuit priest and arrives to Chile in 1723. He is an architect and Vice-Chancellor of the Church and the Workshops of Calera de Tango, and participates in several constructions of the period.

In approximately 1745, he contributes in building the Cathedral of Santiago and executes the drawings of such building along with the priest Juan Hogen, cabinet maker of the workshops of Calera de Tango, according to the ideas proposed by Matías Vásquez de Acuña, who was in charge of the design of the Cathedral. He is also the architect and designs the drawings of the Fuerte de la Planchada in Valparaiso, entrusted upon him by the Governor Manso de Velasco, called the Castle of Valparaiso.

There is no further information on Father Pedro, it is said that he left the country along with other priests, when in 1767; King Charles III decrees the expulsion of the Jesuits from all his lands.

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Adolfo Winternitz (1906 – 1993)

Adolfo Winternitz was born in Vienna, Austria, on October 20, 1906. He was an outstanding painter and stained glass painter. He studied art in his native city and in 1929 he travels to Italy where he lived for 10 years. In 1939 he runs away from the war and settles in Lima, Peru.

In 1940 he establishes the Catholic Art Academy, with the support of the Catholic University and the Catholic Church of Peru. In 1953, once all difficulties are overcome, the Academy becomes the School of Plastic Arts of the Pontificia Catholic University of Peru. Winternitz also teaches Artistic Education and Integration of the Arts in the School of Plastic Arts and in the Engineering University.

He participates in a significant number of exhibits and conferences in Europe and America. He mainly dedicates his artistic life to mural painting, mosaics and stained glass window creating works for different institutions in many countries.

In Chile, he made the stained glass windows of the School Verbo Divino and those of the Votive Temple of Maipu. He dies in Lima on June 17, 1993.

 

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