José R Alicea Biography

José R Alicea

Puerto Rican



Painter and printmaker Jose R. Alicea was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico, in 1928. He studied drawing and painting at the studio of artist Miguel Pou beginning in 1943, and in 1957 he enrolled at the Graphics Workshop of the Intitute of Puerto Rican Culture, studying woodcut, linocut, serigraphy, and intaglio printmaking. He remained there until 1965, eventually working as an assitant to professor Lorenzo Homar.

Alicea was the first artist to be given a solo exhibition of prints at the Ateneo Puertorriqueno (1963). He also exhibited extensively throughout Puerto Rico, the United States, Spain, and the Carribean, in both group and solo shows. He participated in the inaugural Latin American Print Biennial at the Gorman Gallery in New York City (1983), and in 1960, he was commissioned to design the scenery for Ballets de San Juan. Alicea was a professor at the Escuela de Artes Plasticas in San Juan, Puerto Rico beginning in 1965.

Among the awards Alicea received for his work are the Ateneo Puertorriqueno Printmaking Award (1962, '63, '65, '66, '67); the Ateneo Puertorriqueno Poster Award, 1964; the Casa del Arte, San Juan, Puerto Rico grant (1967); the Mildred Boutique Award, Philadelphia, PA (1967); the Fundacion Puertorriqueno de las Humanidades, San Juan award (1979); X Bienal Iberoamericana de Arte, Mexico City, MX award for printmaking (1996); artist's career award, Arts Critics' Association, Puerto Rico (1997); Bienal Iberoamericana de Mexico, Mexico City, silver medal (1997), acknowledgement, Escuela de Artes Plasticas, San Juan, Puerto Rico (1997); honorary doctorate, Universidad de Puerto Rico, Mayaguez Campus (1999) and at the Escuela de Artes Plasticas, San Juan (2000); among others. 

His work is held in the Museum of Modern Art (NY); the Metropolitan Museum of Art (NY); the Museo de Artes de Puerto Rico; the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (TX); the Library of Congress; and the Flint Institute of Arts (MI), among others. 

A complete list of his exhibitions can be found on the artist's page at the Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico.