Francisco Benitez—Bringing to Life Forgotten Styles

Francisco Benitez considers himself an atemporal archaeologist who excavates lost and forgotten styles of painting long assigned to the shadows to reveal the ever-transient nature of the human psyche. Trained in a rigorous atelier program at the Art Student’s League in New York, he frequented museums. He copied old master paintings to master their techniques and conceptual strategies.

Francisco paints with a limited palette of colors typical of artists in antiquity. He paints his favorite subject portraits and figures both in oils and encaustic.

Recently, Francisco acquired Rublev Colours Artists Oils to try in his painting technique. Like other artists who have not used traditionally-made oil paints, Francisco found their working properties different from other commercially-made colors. He described his experience with the oils, “I finished my first major piece using your oils and mediums, and I have to say what an amazing experience it was to use your paints.”

He described Rublev Colours Oleogel as ‘an incredible medium that has fantastic thixotropic qualities and a good “open” period for working and painting wet on wet.’

The piece, entitled Flight in Winter, is a 74” x 48” oil painting on canvas.

Francisco Benítez (b. 1967) was raised in New Mexico, New York, and Spain. His mother, flamenco dancer and choreographer María Benítez, and his father, a Spanish set designer, Cecilio Benítez, influenced his subsequent interest in tenebrist painting and baroque art. Benítez studied Classics at St. John’s College (Santa Fe), academic painting techniques, and anatomy/figure drawing at the Art Student’s League in New York City. Benítez subsequently obtained his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of New Mexico. During that time, he studied abroad at the Facultad de Bellas Artes in Granada, Spain, through an exchange program and later did a graduate-level independent study.

To learn more about Francisco and his work, visit his website at