Ibiza History & Culture

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Artists of Ibiza

Artists on Ibiza (Fifteen)

Antoni Pomar

by Jos� P Ribas


Antonio Pomar Juan was born in Vila, Eivissa's capital, in 1929 and started working as an apprentice jeweller in the family business at the age of fourteen.

Even then, Toni was doing his own designs for the Ibicenco jewellery created by The Pomar family, especially Toni and his brother José, who had a lot to do with a new reconsideration and a much better value for the local "Emprendades", the famed ancestral gold and silver works of art.

At the same time, Toni started his studies at the local Art School (Escola d'Arts i Ofisis d'Eivissa), with Tarrés and Agudo Clará as his first teachers, two remarkable artists of the first half of the 20th century, especially in landscapes and portraits, from which he learned the oil-painting techniques, improved his own drawing techniques, and developed his love and respect for the correct design through long and hard drawing sessions.

Toni keeps good memories of those years. "Tarrés, as he was my first teacher, had a big influence on me; his drawings were really excellent. Agudo Clará was an extraordinary professor, always helping and backing, he used to explain everything, all the little details; it was easy and pleasant to learn with him."

In 1975, after becoming an art professor in Madrid, Toni came back to Eivissa to be a professor of modelling and engraving in the same school, where working and helping with his talent and knowledge he taught new and exceptional artists until 1992.

But, before this happened, in the middle 1950s, Toni also studied and passed his Arts degrees at the "Escuela Superior de Bellas Artes de San Carlos" in Valencia. From this school he discovered the power and the poetry, all the artistic possibilities of the "Mediterranean light". He was deeply impressed by the masterpieces of Joaquin Sorolla, the most representative artist of this High-Art-School from the Eastern part of Spain, full of Mediterranean shining light.

In 1962, Toni Pomar and other three local painters, Ferrer Guasch, Vicent Calbet (see our "Artist on Ibiza" Number six in the series, Weekly Edition 045. Saturday 5th January 2002) and Toni Marí Ribas, "Portmany", formed an artistic group known as "Grupo Puget", in memory of the Ibicenco photographer and painter, Narcís Puget Viñas. For some, he was the first painter to put the name of Eivissa into the world of the Arts, and for the most, with no doubt, the best of his time, at the end of the 19th century and the first decades of the 20th century.

This group only lasted for about two years. Everyone went their own way after exhibiting in the "Circulo de Bellas Artes" and in the "Sala Pelaires", both in Palma de Mallorca, and in the "Caja de Pensiones de Ibiza".

Pomar remembers Narcís Puget from his early years. "I use to see him painting in the street, in front of the Pharmacies (one of the main streets in Vila by the old market). He always had fifteen or twenty people behind, watching him working. Sometimes he stopped at our jewellery or the home door and looked at my drawing. He was always encouraging me to keep on working hard with it. "Draw, draw a lot, keep on drawing Toni," he used to tell me".

"I went twice to his studio to see the master paintings: they looked to me very advanced for the times. I was gratefully and deeply impressed. It was a time in my life that I was very interested, almost intrigued, for everything that could offer me new matters to learn and his paintings caused a big impact on me."

As the art critic Mariano Planells says in one of his articles about Toni Pomar: "It is not casual, there is nothing casual in the great technique of his fluid design and the enormous artistic quality of his drawings"

Toni Pomar and the Sea

One of Pomar's favourite and most successful motifs in his paintings is the sea (though he also features the local people, landscapes and churches, and our ancestral folklore). The seaside and the local coast, people on the beach, swimmers, fishermen repairing the nets, little boats sailing away. The sea, always our illuminated Mediterranean Sea, painted in a very personal style with oils, acrylics and pastels. His "marines" paintings are exclusive and very much appreciated by art collectors.

Toni's life has always been somehow involved with the sea. In his young years he was sub-champion of Spain in the 100 metres backstroke swimming style. In the 1940s there was a group of exceptional swimmers from Eivissa, Pedro Pons, Spanish champion in 1,500m free style, Juan Roselló, also Spanish champion in 400 metres free style, Escandell, Pereria, Basetes, etc. Toni Pomar was one of them.

Also in this decade, 1943, Toni Pomar had his first exhibition, together with Adrian Rosa (see our "Artist on Ibiza" Number Eleven in the series, Weekly Edition 055 Saturday 16th March 2002) at the local Art School (Escola d'Arts i Oficis d'Eivissa).

Since then, Toni Pomar has been exhibiting his work regularly, at least every two years, mostly in the "Sala de Exposiciones de Sa Nostra", in Eivissa, and in the best galleries of the Islands, though his works have sold to many different countries all over the World.

At the beginning of his career, Pomar presented his artworks to several concourses, winning awards in all of them. But he also has the genuine modesty of the real talented artist, and a big heart as a person. He knows the quality of his artistic creations, with the public and the critical acceptance of his work without need of promotions, as well as the fact that he likes to stay on the Islands, doing his methodical, but inspired, creations close to the sea and his loving family.

So soon he left the competition to younger artists, some of them his own pupils, dedicating most of his time to his task as Art-professor. This is the reason why, at present, Toni Pomar is considered a master of masters by a lot of our artists.

At the end of our meeting, I asked him his opinion about some of the actual paintings. Pomar started gently explaining his point of view for a painting to be considered as an Artwork. He pointed to me several details, little curves of the drawings, the quality of it, the way that the figures are displaced within the painting, the correct harmony of the colours, the proper use of the pencil and brushes in every painting technique... "Nowadays," he says, "there is a lot of painting that looks pretty, decorative, and even sells well, but all this technical hard work is missing in most of this painting.

"It takes time and a lot of effort to have a good command of the painting techniques; it is not just the inspiration or a good eye, it's also the time and the hard work that forms the real artist. Without it, it can't be called Art-work, and I'm sorry, but I don't have the time for it".

I could have been there, listening to him for hours, but unfortunately our time was over and we all had to go.

Awards, "Premio Felix Costa" in the "Salón Internacional el Corsario", 1971.

Silver medal in the "I Exposició Internacional de Pintors d'Eivissa", 1971.

"Premio Tito Cittadini 1972" in the "XIII Certamen Internacional de Pollensa", Mallorca. (Since then, his paintings have been wanted regularly in all the best galleries of Mallorca, and his popularity in this Island, is as high as in Eivissa).

Some of the Art galleries where Pomar has had exhibitions during his long career:

"Circulo de Bellas Artes", Palma de Mallorca.
"Galería Xarc" Eivissa.
"Sala d'Exposicions de La Caixa d'Eivissa".
"Sala d'Exposicions de Sa Nostra d'Eivissa".
"Galería Vallribera", Sant Antoni, Eivissa.
Several collective exhibitions in Lausanne, Switzerland. Etc. Etc.

In 1998, the MAC. (Museo de Arte Contemporáneo), of Eivissa, honoured him with a retrospective exhibition of his works done throughout his career.

Also in 1998, another retrospective exhibition, exclusive of his "marines" in the "Sala de Exposicions de Sa Nostra", Eivissa.

Hopefully, Toni Pomar will exhibit his new creations at the same gallery, "Sa Nostra" in September 2003.

Antoni Pomar 1930
Antoni Pomar First Communion 1934
Antoni Pomar 1930
Antoni Pomar with his wife and son 1967
Antoni Pomar & Vicent Calbet 1960 Picture R Mulet
Antoni Pomar 1960
Antoni Pomar 1980
Picture Mariano Planells
Mari Paz, Pep Marí, Antoni Pomar
& Toni Roca 1980
Antoni Pomar 1990
Antoni Pomar
Antoni Pomar & Son Marc 1992
Still Life 1940 Oil 66 x 81,5cm
Still Life 1945 Oil 54 x 44,5cm
Still Life 1946 Oil 38 x 56cm
Still Life 1950 11 x 14,5cm
Still Life 1951 17 x 20,3cm
Without a Title 1950 Oil 24 x 33cm
Sa Casa Vermella 1950 Oil 38 x 46cm
Without a Title 1950 Oil 52 x 62cm
Without a Title 1950 Oil 54 x 36cm
Without a Title 1950 Oil 37 x 80cm
Sant Jordi 1950 Oil 71 x 98cm
Without a Title 1950 Oil 38,5 x 46,5
Without a Title 1952 Oil 38,5 x 47cm
Without a Title 1953 Oil 46 x 54,5cm
Without Title 1953 Oil 38,5 x 47cm
Without Title 1953 Oil 81 x 65cm
Retrat 1955 Oil 72,5 x 60cm
Without Title 1957 Oil 60 x 81cm
Without Title 1958 Oil 98 x 130cm
Without Title 1960 Oil 60 x 81cm
Without Title 1960 Oil 73 x 100cm
Without Title 1960 Oil 30 x 100cm
Without Title 1960 Oil 42,5 x 53cm
Without Title 1968 Oil 25 x 45cm
Without Title 1969 Oil 149 x 54cm
Without Tile 1969 Oil 120 x 60 cm
Without Title 1970 Oil 60 x 73 cm
Without Title 1970 17 x 21 cm
Sant Jordi 1970 Oil 60 x 73
Without Title 1970 Oil 63 x 91
Without Title 1970 Oil 50 x 100 cm
Without Title 1970 Oil 70 x 180
Without Title 1970 Oil 40 x 80 cm
Without Title 1974 Oil 77 x 87 cm
Without Title 1975 Oil 38 x 60 cm
Without Title 1976 Oil 67 x 80 cm
Without Tile 1976 Oil 100 x 50 cm
Without Title 1976 Oil 80 x 65 cm
Without Title 1977 Oil 60 x 81 cm
Without Title 1978 Oil 72,5 x 100 cm
Without Title 1978 Oil 81 x 100 cm
Without Title 1978 Oil 61 x 81 cm
Without Title 1978 Oil 90 x 37,5 cm
Without Title 1978 Oil 63 x 85 cm
Without Title 1978 Oil 73 x 100 cm
Without Title 1978 Oil 62 x 92 cm
Tres Generacions 1980 Oil 22,5 x 16 cm
Without Title 1980 Oil 121 x 193 cm
Without Title 1981 Oil 38 x 55 cm
Without Title 1982 Oil 88 x 128 cm
Without Title 1983 Oil 68,5 x 88 cm
Without Title 1984 Oil 64 x 53 cm
Still Life 1984 Oil 38 x 55 cm
Without Title 1985 Oil 65 x 81 cm
Without Title 1985 Oil 59 x 115 cm
Without Title 1986 Oil 81 x 64,5 cm
Sa Revista 1987 Oil 1987 70 x 109 cm
Without Title 1987 Oil 59,5 x 150 cm
Sa Caleta 1990 Oil 65 x 81 cm
Without Title 1990 Oil 146 x 311 cm
Sant Jordi 1990 Oil 27 x 35 cm
Without Title 1990 Oil 65 x 81 cm
Without Title 1990 Oil 92 x 65 cm
Without Title 1990 Acrilic 65 x 129 cm
Without Title 1990 Pastel 64 x 41 cm
Without Title 1990 Acrylic 65, 5 x 92, 5 cm
Without Title 1990 Acrylic 54 x 130 cm
Without Title 1991 Oil 80 x 120 cm
Without Title 1993-94 Oil 70 x 234 cm
Without Title 1993-94 Oil 80 x 233, 5
Sant Jordi 1994 Oil 81 x 116 cm
Sant Llorenç 1994 Oil 81 x 116 cm
Sant Rafel 1994 Oil 65 x 100 cm
Sant Francesc de ses Salines 1994 Oil 73 x 116 cm
Without Title 1995 Oil 73 x 100 cm
Without Title 1995 Oil 115 x 81 cm
Without Title 1995 Oil 64 x 100 cm
Without Title 1995 Oil 79 x 158,5 cm
Without Title 1953 91 x 53 cm
Without Title 1953 91 x 53 cm
Without Title 1953 91 x 53 cm
Without Title 1953 91 x 53 cm
Retrat d'en Francesc Riera 1954 47 x 33,5 cm
Carrer d'Eivissa 1954 28,5 x 24 cm
Retrat 1955 40 x 30 cm
Carrer d'Eivissa 1955 29 x 24 cm
Without Title 1970 22 x 16 cm
Retrat 1974 32 x 46 cm
Without Title 1984 38 x 46,5 cm
Without Title 1998 43 x 28 cm

All Pictures Courtesy
"Sa Nostra"
Obra Social i Cultural
Museu d'Art Contemporani d'Eivissa
Ajuntament de la Ciutat d'Eivissa

José P Ribas