A Tico Transcends Borders With His Art

    Who hasn't Juan Manuel Delgado painted on his canvas? His hands are not limited when it comes to art and that has led him to be so successful...

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    In Costa Rica there are countless artists, but only one who has conquered other frontiers through his oil paintings, that is Juan Manuel Delgado, who through dedication, inspiration and a lot of love for what he does has earned well-deserved recognition and fame.

    He is Costa Rican by birth and has Canadian nationality, a country where he learned painting techniques thanks to his teacher and mentor Peter Schwartzman, a Canadian architect and visual artist of Russian origin.

    In Canada, precisely because of his focus on drawing and imagination, he decided to study Architecture at Carleton University, in Ottawa, graduating with honors “CUM LAUDE” in 2010.

    Upon graduation, Juan Manuel returned to Costa Rica to further his career as an artist, continuing his studies under the tutelage of the best portrait painter during that time, Gonzalo Morales Sáurez. It should be noted that from the age of approximately 3 he moved to Canada with his parents and his brother, staying there until he finished his university studies.

    When mentioning his parents, Juan Manuel expressed that they have been a constant inspiration for him. “Through their life experiences, wisdom, and sincere love, they imparted valuable and positive lessons that helped shape my personality and ways of thinking. From them I have learned to face challenges with courage, perseverance and determination. Having that unconditional support and that source of encouragement is essential, since in life one fails time and time again, and it is important to get up and never give up on yourself and your dreams. The high values of respect for others and humility are great components in my life that were instilled in me from a very early age in which I appreciate those lessons.”

    Delgado, has an outstanding international reputation and a thriving collection of achievements, in fact, his paintings can be found in North America, Central America, South America, Europe and Asia.

    Juan Manuel has painted portraits and personally presented them to many notable people around the world, some of which include:H.E. Vladimir Norov, former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Uzbekistan (2006-2010) and Secretary-General of the Shanghai Organization (2019-2021); Chancellor Sun Jianzhong, President of Hebei Foreign Studies University; Keylor Navas, goalkeeper of the Costa Rican National Soccer Team; Abundio Gutiérrez ex-president of the Board of Social Protection for its hall of ex-presidents; His Majesty King Simeon II of Bulgaria; the ex-president of the Republic of Costa Rica Oscar Arias Sánchez, the ex-president of the Republic of Costa Rica Laura Chinchilla Miranda; His Holiness Pope Francis at the Vatican, where the Costa Rican Post Office made a stamp with his painting, of which a total of 15,000 stamps were issued, and the mechanical engineer, physicist, and former NASA astronaut Dr. Franklin Chang Diaz.

    Among his successes and greatest recognitions, we want to highlight that the Costa Rican artist has been a guest speaker to open events and give lectures to both teachers and students while he was living in China, here we mention some: He was invited as a distinguished member of the Asia Cultural Artists Association (ACAA) to give a speech and present his art at the Opening Ceremonies of the 75th Anniversary of the United Nations Cultural Exhibition in Shanghai, China, in the year 2020. He was also invited to give a speech at the inauguration of the exhibition “One Hundred Years of Modigliani, the World’s First Exhibition” at the Yindi Art Museum, in Beijing, China, during that same year. He has had numerous individual and collective exhibitions, many of them in China, Costa Rica and the United States.
    Juan Manuel has had the privilege of receiving a “Certificate of Recognition” issued by the Costa Rican Morista Academy, where the portrait of Costa Rica’s National Hero, Juan Rafael Mora Porras, forms part of their private collection. He managed to be a finalist for the oil paintings “Orchid Tongue with Monarch Butterfly” and “Fragmented Waves” of the International Art Masters Competition earlier this year.

    He won the “Gold Award of Excellence” for his oil painting “Escape” from Camelback Gallery’s 5th annual “My Best Work of 2022” International Juried Visual Arts Competition.He was also recognized with the category of“Distinguished Professor”appointed by Hebei Foreign Studies University, Hebei, People’s Republic of China, with an extraordinary ceremony held on its campus in December 2021, and many more.

    Beyond being a private art teacher, who imparts his knowledge of techniques to students of different ages, he is regarded to be one of the best portrait painters in his country.


    From a very young age, he practiced many sports disciplines, among them: basketball, volleyball and soccer, he even received his black belt in martial arts “Kung Fu.”When in Canada, he focused mainly on tennis, participating in numerous national and international tournaments, as he was part of the high-performance junior team of the province of Ontario and part of his university team. Music is not out of his life, since he was also in piano lessons from an early age.

    In Our Exclusive Conversation, The Tico Painter Responded To Several Concerns:

    What inspires you about Costa Rica?

    “We have the great privilege of living in a country of spectacular natural beauty, surrounded by an extraordinary culture and people. Inspiration comes from many experiences and emotions found in everyday life that generate a form of expression where that idea is translated into what will be the concept behind the work of art. The artists use their own lives as a source of inspiration to create powerful and moving paintings. In particular, as a portrait artist, my goal is to capture the warmth and friendliness of Costa Ricans, highlighted by the vibrancy of the culture and the beauty found in the country and all its surroundings,” said Juan Manuel Delgado.

    How do you define art today?

    In his view, art today can be defined very differently compared to other periods in the historical timeline. “Art is a form of self-expression that allows artists to communicate to the public their own perspectives on life, their emotions and various ideas. As a realist painter, I am always looking for greater perfection in my work, this implies a greater element of skill and patience to achieve the representative result. Due to the increasing popularity of the contemporary art movement, it is necessary to preserve all the traditional techniques to capture realistically what one observes in the present to serve as a history of time for future generations.”

    What is needed beyond creativity, because now there are so many digital platforms and times have changed?

    For Delgado, throughout history and in recent years, art has been an expression of the times and the cultural norms of society. As technology advances, art continues to evolve and address new forms of expression. Making art these days requires not only creativity but also technical skills and a deep understanding and knowledge that can only be learned with time and effort. With the advent of digital applications, artists have a wide range of new possibilities and tools at their disposal, ranging from graphic construction applications to online marketplaces for selling and displaying their work.

    What do you think that is needed to learn to paint?

    As an artist and in anything in life, one never stops learning. This is the beauty of art that over the years one can see the evolution of technique and style in their own work. My goal is to continue working hard every day and learning as much as I can so that I can translate that knowledge and personal life experiences into my projects.”

    Juan Manuel Delgado is a character full of surprises. He has always admired the Spanish artist Eduardo Naranjo, whom he met in 2014 in his studio located in Madrid, Spain.

    Do you have any projects for this year or in the future?

    He is currently working on some personal projects, with the possibility of exhibiting individually and collectively at an international level.

    Finally, the proud Costa Rican artist shared a message: “In life, one must do what one truly loves with great responsibility and a tenacious work ethic. The artistic world is a very long and difficult road, however if one is able to overcome many obstacles and continue with strong consistency, those are the most important pieces to create the foundation for success.”

    To learn more about this Costa Rican artist, you can follow his steps on his networks:

    You can also enter his website:

    Resonance Costa Rica
    At Resonance, we aspire to live in harmony with the natural world as a reflection of our gratitude for life. Visit and subscribe at Resonance Costa Rica Youtube Channel
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