Lalo Díaz is a painter of the people, a representative of working class neighborhoods of Buenos Aires as well as of old Amsterdam. His style can be attributed to the surrealism, with themes of city life, political oppression, nostalgia and return; illusions. In later works elements from the world of the tango are never missing. In the early 80s he began to acquire notoriety and participated in exhibitions in various European countries. His most famous work is perhaps the large painting titled From Buenos Aires to Amsterdam.
Lalo Díaz grew up in Buenos Aires, lived and worked there until in 1978, because of his political activities, he was forced by the regime to leave the country.
In exile in Europe, he had to build a whole new life together with his wife and child. As soon as he was admitted as a refugee in the Netherlands, he came in contact with other Latin American exiles, many of which were artists.
He went on to participate in the cultural and socio-political life in this country, from organizing lectures, exhibitions and solidarity meetings to complete Latin American cultural festivals.
He eventually settled in Amsterdam, together with his in the meantime extended family. Here he was able to focus more on painting.Lalo Díaz’ first works consisted mainly of surrealistic scenes. Because, he says, "when I paint, it's like I'm dreaming." So he can assimilate his personal history: scenes of old quarters of Buenos Aires where the tango originated pass into images of Amsterdam as he found it at the time of Provo and their illusion: the White Bicycle Plan.
His wife, dancer and choreographer Mirta Campos, began in those years to give tango performances. When she came to be without a dance partner she persuaded her husband Lalo to go dancing. Thus came the meaning of tango in his life. "It was like an explosion: the lyrics, the nostalgia. In no time, I thought myself Gardel, " he explains in a typical Argentine saying.
Gardel - the symbol of the great illusion of all Argentines - is also a main character in the painting De Buenos Aires a Amsterdam. He runs in the direction of the canals of Amsterdam; one can see a bandoneon playing Carel Kraaijenhof behind a window, as well as a prostitute behind another window. The bandoneon and the embrace of tango dancers are the most essential elements, as in his 'dream of painting' he focuses on the tango; the characters are dreamers, melancholics, those who have illusions.
Summary Lalo Díaz
Together with his wife Mirta Campos, he founded the first Tango School in
Amsterdam, followed by the Academia de Tango - a total Argentine Cultural Center,
where not only the dance is taught, but also music and where lecturesand exhibitions
From that moment on one can say that Lalo Díaz is a tanguero completo: he dances, listens and paints the tango.
“But in the end everything is an illusion. I dance and paint the same way I borrow a bicycle or eat an empanada. It has something transient and it all goes past. "
Summary Lalo Díaz
May 1984: Participation in exhibition of Latin American artists in the Chilean Center for Culture, Amsterdam
Nov.1984: Participation in exhibition of Latin American artists in Brussels
May 1985: Contribution and cooperation in organizing collective exhibition during the Cultural Week of Spanish Speaking, Amsterdam
June 1985: Collective exhibition in Alkmaar
Sep. 1985: Mural 'Amsterdam-Managua, " Paradiso, Amsterdam
June 1986: Exhibition at Cultural Center Centro José Martí, Amsterdam
Aug. 1986: Mural in the Tropenmuseum, Amsterdam
Oct. 1987: Collective exhibition on initiative of VARA television, Amsterdam
july 1988: Exhibition at the Roxy, Amsterdam
Sept.1988: Exhibition in the Satyricon, Maastricht
Oct. 1992: Participation in exhibition "El Arte del Tango", Amsterdam
May 1993: Collective exhibition in Artotheek, Zoetermeer
May. 1994 Exhibition in Grand Tango, Brussels
Nov. 1994: Exhibition in Hinterhoftheater, Gelsenkirchen (Germany)
Nov. 1995: Exhibition at the Consulate of Argentina, Amsterdam
Sept.1996: Exhibition at the Piano Factory, Brussels
Apr. 1997: Collective exhibition at the De Salentein, Nijkerk
Aug. 1997: Collective exhibition at the Museum van der Togt, Amstelveen
Feb. 1998: Collective exhibition at Galerie Gold & Schmied, Munich (Germany)
May 1998: Collective exhibition at the 4th International Festival, Lisbon (Portugal)
Nov. 1998: Collective exhibition Art Forum Arabella Park, Munich (Germany)
Febr.1999: Collective exhibition in the Veemvloer, Amsterdam
Apr. 1999: Exhibition at Flor de Fango, Arhnem
Oct. 1999: Exhibition at Café Eijlders, Amsterdam
Dec. 2000: Participation in exhibition Academia de Tango, Amsterdam
May 2001: Participation Art Forum Arabella Park, Munich (Germany)
Oct. 2002: Collective exhibition in the Historical Museum, Amsterdam
Nov. 2002: One-man exhibition at Academia de Tango, Amsterdam
Dec. 2011: One-man exhibition at Roeie Zaol, Maastricht