Rafel Bestard


Born in Palma de Mallorca, 1967.

Degree in Fine Arts by the University of Barcelona,1990. Lives and works in Sa Casa Blanca, Mallorca since 2004.

Drawing professor at ESADIB, Palma de Mallorca, between 2009 and 2012.

Courses and seminars of theory and history of contemporary art in the Fundació Pilar i Joan Miró, Juan March Foundation, Casal Solleric. Painting workshops with Antonio Lopez in the Francisco de Goya Chair, Museo Casa Ibañez and Albacete City Chair.

His first solo show was in 1996 in the now extinct Galeria Mediterrania, in Palma. Since then, regularly shows his work in galleries, art fairs, museums and art centers.

With his companion and also artist, Ana Del Valle, both are invited and granted for summer 2018 as Artist-In-Residence in RiddergadeAIR, the art residency program of Viborg Kunsthal, Denmark.

Artist Statement

My working procedure begins staging personal encounters, in my studio, with close people. I document these meetings by means of photographs. I use these pictures as references to my paintings, that therefore are the final form of a process based on a photo document based on a performance.

With my subjects I try to display a broad range of evocative powers with the simplest things or gestures. On each one of my paintings something is trying to break through. Embracing communication problems with my beloved ones, references to the world: complex, distorted, with autobiographical interpretations, between feelings of safety and uncertainty, melancholy and hope, resignation and defiance. Emotional tension between affection and detachment is present.

Solo shows

  • Rafel Bestard. Heissings Art, Berlin, 2021
  • Rafel Bestard. Galeria Contrast, Barcelona, 2021
  • Rafel Bestard. Heissings Art, Berlin, 2021
  • Rafel Bestard. Galeria Contrast, Barcelona, 2021
  • Rafel Bestard. Galerie Mokum, Amsterdam, 2020
  • Rafel Bestard. Galerie Heissingsart, Berlin, 2019
  • Man or Rabbit. Galeria Contrast. Barcelona, 2019
  • Infamous angel. Can Gelabert. Binnissalem, 2018
  • We the souls. Kirk Gallery. Aalborg, 2018
  • To touch a sore spot. Galeria Contrast, Barcelona, 2015
  • Rafel Bestard. Malerei. Galerie Heissingsart, Lübeck, 2014.
  • Paisatge interior, Galería Contrast. Barcelona, 2013
  • Virtudes inconfesables, Galería Contrast. Barcelona, 2009
  • Inadaptacions, Casal Solleric. Palma de Mallorca, 2009
  • Rafel Bestard, Obres 1998-2006, Torre de Ses Puntes, Manacor, Mallorca, 2006
  • Rafel Bestard, Son Tugores. Alaró, 2004
  • Rafel Bestard, Pintures 02, Galería Horrach Moyá. Palma de Mallorca, 2003

Group exhibitions

  • Back to art, Heisings Art, Lübeck, 2021
  • Contrast by Contrast, Galeria Contrast, Barcelona, 2020
  • At the edge of realism, Kirk Gallery, Aalborg, 2020
  • Irrealisme, Galeria Contrast, Barcelona, 2017
  • Peripècies, S’Escorxador, Marratxí, 2016
  • The 3rd , 4th & 6th Beijing International Art Biennale. National Art Museum of China, Beijing, 2008, 2010, 2015.
  • Masters and Students, Palacio Los Serrano, Bankia Found. Ávila, 2014
  • Figuracions, Galeria Contrast, Barcelona, 2013
  • Narracions. Galeria Contrast. Barcelona, 2011
  • Watermarks. NDSM-werf, Amsterdam, 2009
  • Art emergent a les Illes Balears III. Itinerant exhibition between 2004 & 2007, Balearic Islands and Barcelona

Art fairs

  •   Context Art Miami, Miami. 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021
  •   VOLTA Basel. 2019, 2021
  •   ART KARLSRUHE, Karlsruhe. 2019, 2020 
  •   Scope Basel International Art Fair. Basel, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 & 2017
  •   KunstRAI, Amsterdam, 2016, 2017, 2018 & 2019
  •   CI Contemporary Istambul, Istambul, 2013, 2014 & 2015
  •   SWAB, Barcelona, 2013 & 2014
  •   TIAF Toronto International Art Fair, Toronto, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 & 2014
  •   Scope New York International Art Fair. New York, 2010 & 2012
  •   Scope Miami 2010, International Art Fair. Miami, 2010

Prizes at Art Competitions

  • Special Distinction of the jury, X Premi Salou de Recerca Pictòrica,. Salou, 2016
  • 1stPrize X Bienal de Artes Plásticas Ciudad de Albacete. Albacete, 2012
  • Adquisiton Prize, VIII Bienal de Artes Plásticas Ciudad de Albacete. Albacete, 2008
  • Jury’s special mention, Premis Ciutat de Palma d’Arts Plàstiques, Palma de Mallorca, 2007 & 2008
  • 1st Prize, Premi Ciutat de Manacor d’Arts Plàstiques, 2007 Manacor
  • 2nd Prize, Certamen internacional de Pintura Vila de Binissalem, Binissalem 2004
  • 1st Prize, Certamen de Pintura Dijous Bo 2001, Inca
  • 1st   Prize, XL Premi a la pintura jove, Sala Parés-Fund. Banc de Sabadell, Barcelona,    1999