Hugo Fontela was born in Grado, Principality of Asturias, in 1986. Already as a child, he was always interested in drawing and painting, but it was not until 2001, at 14 years of age, and thanks to Asturian artist Amado Hevia “Favila”, that he accessed the School of Arts and Crafts of Avilés. There he learnt to paint in an academic fashion, something that gained him an Extraordinary Award for the Merit in the Arts granted to the most outstanding pupils. He left the school in June 2002, at 16 years of age, and he also finished the first tier of his secondary education. Later on, he studied the second tier of secondary education specialising in arts at the School of Fine Arts of Oviedo. From this moment onwards, he entered the art world, combining his education with an active participation in the artistic life of the Principality. In 2004 he sat the exam to access University, which he passed with sufficient merit for him to access the Faculty of Fine Arts, but he finally decided to study at The Art Students League, in New York. Already in the United States, he was granted the BMW Award for Painting in 2005, one of the most prestigious awards in Spain, which he received in Madrid from the hands of HM Queen Sophia. After receiving this important award, he was invited to the XVIII Painting Biennial of Zamora. In 2007, he was granted the Award to Best Artist at the graphic art fair ESTAMPA, an award granted by the Art Critics Association of Madrid. In 2011, Barcelona and Asturias have been chosen as the two locations to host two large exhibitions of his work. The Museum Montserrat displays an exhibition including his whole American works, and it was officially opened by the Prince and Princess of Asturias, while the Niemeyer Centre in Avilés shows the exhibition “Niemeyer by Fontela”.
Since 2005 he lives and works in Manhattan