Alvaro Castagnet is a renowned watercolour painter. Currently living in Uruguay, he travels the world to exhibit, demonstrate, judge, and teach. He has written articles for multiple international art publications, as well as authored three successful books of his own. He is a member of the American Watercolor Society, Australian Watercolour Institute and Uruguayan Cultural Association Watercolourists (ACUA), and an honorary member of The Ohio Watercolor Society. His work is collected by many worldwide and has been recognised by numerous prestigious awards over the last 30 years.
Castagnet was born in 1954 in Montevideo, Uruguay. From an early age, his interest in art was encouraged by his father, who enrolled him into the National School of Art in Montevideo. He continued his formal education under the tutelage of colour theorist and oil painter, Miguel Angel Pareja, at the Fine Arts University. In 1983, Castagnet migrated to Australia. He stayed for 20 years. In 1985, he held his first solo exhibition.
Teaching has become as a big part of Castagnet’s career. He regularly demonstrates at sold-out workshops and paints in a series of globe-trotting videos. Snippets of which you can see on his YouTube channel. He has also published two, out-of-print books – Watercolor Painting with Passion and the bestseller, Painting with Passion—Beyond Technique. Last year saw the release of his new book, Alvaro Castagnet’s Watercolour Masterclass. It delves deeper into his techniques and experiences. Both his previous book have become very collectible, with some sellers attaching high prices to them. If you want to get into the mind of a master, for a reasonable price, the new book gives you that opportunity.
Castagnet has become famous for capturing spirited urban scenes. Standing right in the middle of a bustling city centre, he perches the canvas on a small easel with a squirrel mop brush in hand. He paints wet-on-wet, energetically dancing the brush across the page. In no time at all an image emerges, unencumbered by all the small details. Castagnet captures the essence of the moment, the lighting, the feeling and all of its wonder.