Juan Francisco Adaro

Juan Francisco Adaro

Juan Francisco Adaro is an artist of all visual media, however, he is most well known as a painter whose signature painting style is the utilization of oil, watercolor, industrial paint, gesso, and acrylic in a chaotic freestyle form while creating lifelike portraits.

Francisco was born in 1978 in Buenos Aires, Argentina.  His passion for art began at the age he was old enough to pick up a pencil. As a teenager, he began painting in the streets of San Telmo and La Boca and had a mobile gallery on the back of his motorcycle so he could quickly escape when the police would come around.  His passion and drive were quickly recognized when he was asked to study art at the National University of Art in Buenos Aires, Prilidiano Puyrredon & UINA.  The creative influences and art internships with famed Argentine artists Susana Fedrano, Osvaldo Atila, Marcelo Carpita, Gerardo Cincilolo, and Enrique Morales led to becoming a muralist for political groups and activists in Buenos Aires during the financial collapse of 2001.  His dramatic murals’ focus on social suffering and his unique approach to portraits of the humanity of his subjects drew the attention of the curators at the BAC, CC Borges and the CCC-Buenos Aires where he was asked to produce works for several one-man shows and group exhibitions.

It was during this period that Francisco met his future wife, Brooke Gontarek, at a street fair in Buenos Aires while she was on vacation from Niceville, FL.  He was painting in the street and she had her translator help with the transaction of two large paintings that were shipped back to the states.  “I knew English,” says Francisco, “but the translator wanted to make the deal so he told me to pretend I couldn’t understand her.”  It wasn’t until 2010 when Brooke returned to Buenos Aires to study Argentine wine, learn Spanish, and teach English that she reunited with Francisco.  “I had just arrived in Buenos Aires when Roberto (the translator from years before) informed me that Francisco had a gallery on the street I was living.  I went to the gallery expecting to buy a piece of art and say hello as best I could.  I ended up engaged to the artist instead,” states Brooke.  This moment in his life became  a more carefree experimental time, which prompted Francisco to elaborate on a project called “dance to your favorite song.” This was an extension of his portraits and an attempt at capturing movement and the inner spirit of the person in a moment of freedom and happiness.  He would set up a white canvas and simply ask tourists in the street to pick their favorite song and dance to it while he filmed them.  The project was picked up by Asshire, who added the creative collaborations of  French DJ Linda Shaker and Argentine guitarist Javier Adaro to the project and “Dance” became a worldwide traveling festival show.

In 2012 Francisco with his wife decided to see how his art would do in the States, so they made the move back to her home town of Niceville.  It was here that Francisco came up with his most signature style to date – the extended canvas pieces.  His wife is a Sommelier and had stacks of wooden wine boxes that are too nice to throw away, but were taking up a lot of space. So, Francisco decided to utilize the boxes to create pieces of 3D works that incorporate his portraits with an added element of depth and interest.  He has also recently began adding other found elements to his work, further creating depth and a feeling of being a part of the painting itself.  It’s these works that have brought recognition in galleries around the country, festival awards, 2014 South Walton Painter of the Year, ArtsQuest poster winner, and South Walton 2015 Artist of the Year.  “I’ve been so lucky to know this area,” says Francisco. “The people here in the USA and especially in South Walton have embraced me and I am so thankful.”  On the heels of the Artist of the Year award, Francisco opened a gallery in Grayton Beach, FL, where he showcases not only his work, but also the works of other national and international artists.


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Adaro Art & Design Gallery
51-1 Uptown Grayton Circle
Grayton Beach, FL 32459

(561) 985-5767



2015 South Walton Artist of the Year
2014 South Walton Painter of the Year