Victor Castillo was born in Santiago, Chile in 1973. He began drawing obsessively at the age of five, inspired by the animations he saw on television, science fiction movies, and the illustrations on record covers such as Pink Floyd’s “The Wall”.
Following studies at the University of Art and Social Sciences (ARCIS) and the Catholic University of Chile, from which he was expelled, Victor joined the independent experimental art collective Caja Negra in Santiago, creating multimedia installations. In 2004 Victor moved to Barcelona, Spain, where he dedicated himself to painting and established his style with references to comics, graffiti, and old master paintings, particularly Goya’s Black Paintings after seeing them at the Prado Museum. Victor’s Explicit Lyrics exhibition with Iguapop Gallery in 2007 was a critical success with the national newspaper El País publishing a full-page article about his tragicomic vision titled The Triumph of Pop Surrealism. Victor’s first solo exhibition in the United States was with Roq La Rue in Seattle the following year, and in 2010 Victor moved to Los Angeles, California, where he currently lives and works.
Victor tells stories in his paintings. As if it were a contemporary chronicle, his work appropriates the narrative logic of illustrations for children’s stories, and the aesthetics of classic animations, to present us with allegories about cruelty, fear, rebellion, greed, indoctrination, violence, and other abuses of power that the artist sees being imposed worldwide. His colorful work has also been described as political poetry coming from the Latin American experience.
Victor has created murals for the National Museum of Fine Arts (MNBA) and Centro Gabriela Mistral (GAM) in Santiago, Chile; the Museum of Modern Art in Chiloe; the Center for Contemporary Culture Barcelona (CCCB), Spain among other installations.