One of Puerto Rico’s top painters and muralists has died. Augusto Marín was 89.
Marín’s daughter Ivelisse Marín said the artist died Thursday at a hospital in the capital, San Juan. She said the cause was a lung infection and that he had been hospitalized since Sunday.
Marin had a long artistic career but was best known for large paintings and murals that blended Caribbean and religious elements, said José Alegría, director of San Juan’s Obra gallery. “All the top collectors (in Puerto Rico) have a painting of his,” Alegría said.
His murals adorn public and private buildings around Puerto Rico, including a shopping center near the island’s main airport and a condominium complex in the tourist zone of Isla Verde.
Born Nov. 20, 1921 in San Juan, Marin studied art as a child. While serving in the Army during World War II, he published a comic strip in an island newspaper about the experiences of a Puerto Rican soldier and his daily life in the military, according to a biography posted on his website. Later, he studied in New York and Los Angeles, where he specialized in mural design, before returning to Puerto Rico.
He served as a professor of painting and design at the School of Fine Arts of the Puerto Rican Institute of Culture in San Juan, and as a professor at the University of Puerto Rico’s Carolina campus, according to the website.
The governor of Puerto Rico ordered flags on the island to be lowered to half-staff for three days to mark his death.