These days the anniversary of the death of the Ayamontino painter Antonio Gómez Feu, a deaf-speaking artist who captivated everyone with his special sensitivity and his very special way of capturing a landscape, an interior or a portrait on canvas with the same ease. If something had to be said about him, surely we could hear it from someone’s lips, or from many, perhaps from all those who had the opportunity to live in his time, to visit his exhibitions, to communicate with him – since he was a great conversationalist. despite being deaf-mute-, being surprised by his literary concerns, his enormous sensitivity, his eagerness to travel, his humanity and his simplicity, being especially a friend of his friends.
Today, after a few years of his absence, I feel his friendship as if I had finished saying goodbye to him in any street or square in our Ayamonte, with the vivid memory of a conversation that had just ended and that tasted of wisdom and experience. And if he had to define the broader concept of his style, they could do so through his fantastic watercolors (from the Segrelles school) as opposed to the light portraits, the rich composition of the still lifes, the arabesque detail of the church interiors ( of the Sevillian school), to the tight perspectives of the landscape, to the faithful reproduction of the philatelic … And that wide diversity that he handled so masterfully, was only due to the mastery of the technique in its most diverse meanings.
We would talk about his time in Valencia when he was a student; from Seville, that stage of maturity and I look at the galleries; and from when in 1952 he settled in Barcelona, where he developed his pictorial career until in the summer of 1983 he arrived in Ayamonte until the last days of his life. A life that passes between the silence of his lips and the best conversations on his canvases.
His teaching degree obtained at the San Fernando School of Fine Arts in Madrid was his calling card, while the best specialized reviews were his calling card. Away from circles and groups, he was an independent, honest, creative fighter, capable of showing off with oil, watercolor or pencil, and sure of achieving the best work in portraiture (he immortalized great personalities of military life, social and cultural of the moment, highlighting the watercolorist Segrelles, military of the time or his last portrait of the Ayamonte painter D´Esury); illustrative imagery (Becquer and his legends, Bethoven and his Heroic March, Camoes and Las Luisiadas, Don Quixote or philatelic prints); in the interiors of temples (Los Jerónimos de Lisboa, the Cloister of La Rabida, Las Angustias or San Antonio de Ayamonte); still lifes full of life; the urban landscapes of old Barcelona or the beauty of the Alcázar of Seville or the Casa de Pilatos.
And in his eyes the tears of gratitude to his city, which knew how to honor him when he could still give thanks. A simple tribute in the courtyard of the town hall on the evening of August 22, 1980. Eighty works in an anthological exhibition in the chapter house. Lettering of a street with your name. Dinner of honor in the municipal booth and a mayor who knew how to rise to the occasion, the always remembered Juan Antonio González. And many things that could be said about this distinguished Ayamonte painter, about this great person and about this good friend, who lived in Barcelona for part of his existence, but who always took Ayamonte with him and left him present in each of his works. .
Today it is only a matter of remembering him, possibly, as one of the best painters that Ayamonte engendered. From this city that is more beautiful because it was yours, a hug.
Jose Luis Rua