Inside the Studio

Carlos San Millan

What are the major themes you pursue in your work?

I usually work with traditional themes and subjects. They already have a historic charge that I take advantage of, but when I paint them, I try to apply contemporary plastic treatments to create a new meaning and make them more evocative, even though I do not consider myself a conceptual painter.

What was the best advice given to you as an artist?

When you are comfortable with your technique and method, it’s time to abandon it. Also, never work thinking of the money.

Prefer to work with music or in silence?

I usually work listening to classical music, but when I have to concentrate in order to resolve a difficult problem, I prefer silence. 

If you could only have one piece of art in your life, what would it be?

Any of the small plein-air beach sketches of Joaquin Sorolla.

Who are your favorite writers?

I have a lot of favorite writers, but the best of all of them has always been Julio Cortázar.