Sin título (testigos)
By María José Monge, Visual Arts Curator, MBCCR
Adrián Arguedas Ruano (1968) is a Costa Rican artist known for his paintings and sculptures. He has a Licentiate in Plastic Arts, specializing in Engraving from the National University of Costa Rica. He holds a specialty in Engraving from the Municipal School of Fine Arts of Lorient, France (1993) and a Masters in Plastic Arts from the University of Miami in Florida, USA (1998).
He has been a professor at the School of Art and Visual Communication of the National University of Costa Rica since 1991. He has taught both at the University of Costa Rica and the University of Miami.
He has exhibited both individually and collectively in Central America, the Dominican Republic, France, Miami and China, among other countries, and has received several distinctions, ranging from scholarships and honorable distinctions to awards of many sorts. Among the latter stand out his “Aquileo J. Echeverría” National Award in Engraving and Painting, which he has received in three occasions: the first in 1994 for his Suite sexuelle series; the second in 2004 for his painting exhibition Las cualidades del blanco, and the third in 2007 for his Súper héroes painting exhibition.
Sin título (Testigos) clearly displays his extraordinary command of wood engraving, a technique in which Arguedas made a significant contribution with his unquestionable command of artistic drawing and woodcarving, as well as for enlarging engraving formats, which are traditionally small.
Some traits present in this work, such as coherence between its content and technique and style, as well as a sophisticated ability to appropriate references of various types are traits resources, are common of Arguedas’ entire body of works.
For example, in this work, references to Greco-Latin art interact with contemporary figures dressed in suits, ties and even masks. Their convergence seems to suggest an agreement among representatives of western country powers, such as religion, politics and economy, which are in turn supported by culture. The shadowed greco-latin figures and the high contrasting figures on the foreground cast a sinister air over the painting, as if portraying a shady deal that we as spectators are witnessing.
 Translator’s note: A licentiate is a degree awarded in Costa Rica after an additional two semesters of courses and a thesis.
How to cite this article
Monge Picado María José. (2014). Sin título (testigos). San José, Costa Rica: Fundación Museos del Banco Central. Available at: link