Juan Carlos Camacho

Costa Rica, b.

Lives and works in San José, Costa Rica

Juan Carlos Camacho’s watercolours are informed by his fascination with the relationship between art and architecture. His academic background includes studying drawing, painting and architecture at the University of Costa Rica, an education that has shaped his perspective on these disciplines as mutually complementary. Camacho portrays strong contrasts of light and shadow, as well as dynamic backgrounds painted with fast, expressive strokes that occasionally delve into abstraction. From these backdrops, Camacho paints intricate structures that take centre stage, bringing them to life with an injection of personality that evokes human presence and lived experiences. Whether portraying homes, agricultural buildings or weathered fences, Camacho captures snapshots of Costa Rica, exploring the interconnectedness between human worlds and the landscapes we occupy.

Some of Camacho’s watercolours depict uninhabited landscapes, which capture the spirit of the country’s rugged coastlines or lush foliage. Additionally, drawing on his architectural background, Camacho creates a purely abstract body of work with bold, colourful compositions. He reduces subjects to distinct shapes and forms, skillfully balancing delicate areas of colour and watercolour marks with confident lines and contours.

Aside from showing across Costa Rica, Camacho has also exhibited extensively around the world in countries such as Spain, Italy, Mexico and the United States. In 2012, he won the prestigious “Aquileo J. Echeverría” prize, awarded in conjunction with the Costa Rican Association of Watercolor Artists and the Ministry of Culture. He also received recognition at the XI International Watercolor Biennial Prize at the Alfredo Guati-Rojo Museum in Mexico City.

Juan Carlos Camacho in his studio, 2023 (Photography by Julio Sequeira)

"Paintings are like an architectural design, with the same concepts of composition, proportion and harmony." Camacho, 2022