Last month, architect and painter Tiago Azevedo (@tiagoazevedoart) opened his latest exhibition in New York City, featuring 14 new paintings from his newest series. The show, held at Pier 36, gathered celebrities and art enthusiasts in a vibrant atmosphere, where the feeling that “New York City is back” could not have been more present.
“This exhibition has been such a beautiful experience. I missed seeing the expressions of people contemplating art,” said Azevedo when asked about the show. “After years of creating art without any live feedback, it was such a joy to see people's reactions to my work,” he continued, reflecting on the impact of COVID on the art world.
Tiago Azevedo photographed by Cody Rasmussen
“Art exhibits are a pleasure – because of the element of surprise. I am always amazed that some of the art pieces – that I do not necessarily consider to be my best ones – get much more attention than the others. It makes me look at my work in a completely different way. What you, as an artist, consider to be more perfect or beautiful is not necessarily what attracts people the most. Works of art, just as humans, are appreciated for their personality and strength rather than for their beauty. This is such a positive change in society, and it is an honor to witness that firsthand. I know we are heading in a wonderful direction.”
Azevedo’s primary medium is oil on canvas, and his style is integrated in the Pop-Surrealism movement, which he describes as a “veil between the material and immaterial.”
Tiago Azevedo and art curator and TV personality José Castelo Branco
“Tiago’s technique is unique, you will not find it in any other artist” says Azevedo's art dealer and curator José Castelo Branco. “He gives life to the paintings. It is like the eyes of his portraits can actually talk.” Azevedo’s aesthetic blends classical techniques from the Baroque and Pre-Raphaelite periods with contemporary concepts of his own devising: the enhancement of particular anatomical features, such as the cheekbones and the eyes.
When asked about his painting technique, Tiago Azevedo says that, while he went to art school, exploring different techniques and researching the Old Masters is at anyone’s reach, especially in the age of the internet. “A great way of learning is looking at past artists. For example, studying Leonardo da Vinci or Sandro Botticelli and their techniques.” Azevedo has a popular YouTube channel where he explores the biographies of Old Masters, such as Italian Renaissance painters Giotto and Titian, but also of his fellow contemporaries like Mark Ryden and Kehinde Wiley.
Tiago Azevedo and fashion icon and jewelry designer Lady Betty Grafstein
Before launching his career as a painter in 2014, Azevedo worked for nearly a decade as an architect. One of his most celebrated projects is the rooftop of the prestigious 5-star Bayerischer Hof Hotel, in Munich.
This was Azevedo’s third exhibition in New York City, following the 2016 “The Brothers Grimms' Fairy Tales” and the 2017 “Religion” collections. Both were critical hits in the Pop-Surrealist art community, leading to the release of his first illustration book.
Photographed by Cody Rasmussen
Photography by: Courtesy of Tiago Azevedo