Bruno Andrade passed away on October 7, 2013, at the age of 66. A native of South Texas, Andrade was a widely recognized and distinguished American artist. While firmly grounded in his Chicano heritage, Andrade’s artistry is driven by aesthetics and a profound sense of place. Inspired by nature, he painted from memory and from his own interior vision. He was a realist with a refined sense of abstraction, a subtle colorist with a boisterous use of hues, and a sophisticated painter inoculated with the wonder of an eccentric visionary. Charles Mitchell, writing in Artforum Magazine, noted Andrade’s “easy manner and unapologetic gorgeousness” of his “unabashedly beautiful paintings,” while Jamie James recorded the energy of Andrade’s work in the pages of The New Yorker: “The most cheerful…painting show in town-faux naïve floral still-lifes, with pronounced echoes of Matisse, drawing on the gaudy palette of a Mexican border town.”
Andrade had more than 30 solo exhibitions– including five one-person shows at MB Modern in the fuller Building on 57th Street at Madison Avenue, in New York City. He exhibited at numerous other venues, including Driscoll Babcock Galleries, New York; Cayman Gallery, New York; Michele Mosko Miller Gallery, New York; Gerald Peters Gallery, Santa Fe, NM; Wilhelmi Holland Gallery, Corpus Christi, TX; Edith Baker Gallery, Dallas, TX; Gerald Peters Gallery, Dallas, TX; Caroline Lee Gallery, Houston, TX; Lynn Goode Gallery, Houston, TX; Carrington/Gallagher Gallery, San Antonio, TX; Anarte Gallery, San Antonio, TX; Buchanan Galleries, Galveston, TX; Sylvia Schmitdt Gallery, New Orleans, LO; Barbara Gillman Gallery, Miami Beach, FL; Jerry Solomon Gallery, Los Angeles, CA. His work was shown in museum exhibitions from California to New York, and abroad through the Art in Embassies program.
Andrade’s work accrued critical in The Village Voice, The New Yorker, NY Arts, Art & Antiques and Artforum magazines. He was a recipient of grants from the Ford Foundation, The National Endowment for the Arts, the Smithsonian Institution and Texas A&M. Andrade’s work was featured on the cover of George Vargas’ 2008 book Contemporary Chicano Art, and was featured in numerous other books including Alan Gussow’s The Artist as Native (1993); Gary Keller's (et. al) Contemporary Chicana and Chicano Art (1997); and John Driscoll and Arnold Skolnik’s The Artist and the American Landscape (1998). In 2010 he was the subject of a monograph by John Driscoll, Bruno Andrade: The Nature I Paint, the first book to survey the artist’s achievement.
In addition to his very active career as a painter, Andrade was an art professor. He taught for three years at Stephens College, Columbia, MO, before becoming a principle figure in the art history department at his alma matter, Texas A&M University, Corpus Christi, for more than two decades. There he influenced and inspired several generations of young painters through his excellent teaching methodology and his compassionate interest in the professional development of his students.
Bruno Andrade’s glittering sense of humor, his pure and guileless spirit, and his richly endowed creative vision were a gift to all who crossed his path.
Pictured above, from left to right: James Kiberd, Sondra Gilman, Marylyn Dintenfass, Bruno Andrade. This photograph was taken at the afterparty hosted by Sondra Gilan & Celso Gonzalez-Falla in celebration of Andrade's 2010 Driscoll Babcock Galleries exhibition, "The Nature I Paint."