Nano Lopez was born October 31, 1955, in Bogota, Colombia. He was recognized early in his life for his artistic talent when he was awarded first place in a municipal school drawing contest at the age of five. By high school, he was making serious copies of the Masters including Michelangelo’s sculptures and paintings.
Nano continued his upper division studies and studio work at the School of David Manzur, The Rembrandt Academy, and the National University in Bogota. In 1978, he traveled to Spain and began working for the sculptor Francisco Baron. While with Francisco, Nano carved marble and granite and fabricated in steel. He worked all three materials on a monumental scale. It was in Madrid that he began casting his own works in bronze and held his first single artist show. After several years of learning in Madrid, Nano traveled to France, where he furthered his studies, showing his work more often. He attended the Superior National School of Beaux Art in Paris, and focused his studies in new materials, discovering the versatility of various casting media.
In 1981, he returned to Bogota to build a studio and put to use the methods he had learned in Europe. In 1983, Nano moved again this time to the Pacific Northwest area of the United States. He began to work with Manuel Izquierdo, head of the sculpture department at the Pacific Northwest College of Art. During the following four years, he was employed by various bronze foundries in the Northwest, and further developed his techniques in welding, and tooling of bronzes. Additionally, he continued to learn and develop skillful and original uses of patinas.
Nano began his own business in 1987 in Walla Walla, Washington, model-making, reducing and enlarging maquettes to monumental sizes. There was a great demand for Nano’s talent by both artists and foundries. In 2001 and 2002, Nano designed, built, and moved into his custom building. It contains very high ceilings with skylights and 8,000 square feet of floor space. Nano’s attractive building is enhanced by artistic landscaping and a beautiful scenic pond. It now serves as his personal studio space.
Nano has become successful in the production and marketing of his fine art bronzes and no longer takes on the business of enlargements. This frees up his time for the creation of his own work. His “Nanimals” engage viewers of all ages and reflect a sense of playfulness, intense creativity, and wonder. The combination of Nano’s classical training, experimentation with materials, and extensive experience, has led to the production of avant-garde art, which combines aesthetic considerations and rich textural surfaces. Nano’s work invites us to experience a range of emotions from joyful sense of wonder and creativity to deeply felt emotions relating to the human struggle.
To learn more about Nano Lopez, you can visit the artist’s website.