Alfredo Nicolás Guttero was born in Buenos Aires on May 26, 1882. He studies music as a child and from an early age he shows his drawing abilities. He starts a law career which he quits two years later to start painting full time. Ernesto de la Cárcova and Martín Malharro encourage him towards this change and, in 1904 he gets a scholarship to travel to France to further his work. His scholarship only lasted a year, but with his family’s help and his work related to decorative art, he manages to stay in Paris until 1917, where he studies under Maurice Denis.
He moves to Spain, and towards 1917, he studies in Madrid and La Coruña. Then he moves to Segovia in 1918. In this occasion he takes parts in a collective exhibition of Argentine painters and sculptors, together with artists such as Fray Guillermo Butler and Pablo Curatella Manes, among others. After his passing through Germany, Austria and Italy, in 1925 he settles in Genova where he holds an exhibition of his entire artistic production to date.
After 23 years in Europe, on September 26, 1927, Guttero arrives in Buenos Aires, and on October 20, he holds an exhibit at Asociación Amigos del Arte. That same year, the Comisión Nacional de Bellas Artes acquires for the Museo Nacional his piece: Mujeres indolentes (Indolent women). A week later he takes part in the Feria del Boliche de Arte invited by Leonardo Estarico and Atalaya.
Upon his return from Genova, he continues his investigation and development of the pictorial techniques denominated by him as “cooked plaster”, a technical procedure based on a paste of plaster with pigments mixed in with glue that the artist generally applied mounted on wooden supports. As of this moment, Guttero starts in Buenos Aies an intensive array of exhibits and other activities which make a big impact on the local cultural scene, apart from continuing with his personal art production.
Between 1927 and 1932, the year of his sudden death, Alfredo Guttero takes part, among other projects, in the “3ª Exposición Comunal de Artes Aplicadas e Industriales 1927- 1928”, where he is awarded the Grand Prize in the Sección Pintura Decorativa; and the “X Salón de Otoño de Rosario” (1928) where he gets the Gold Medal for the Figure category; he presents works in the exhibits organized by Ateneo Popular de la Boca (1928); “XVIII Salón Nacional“ (1929) and is awarded the Second Municipal Prize for his work Playa (Beach). In 1929, he organizes the “Nuevo Salón” in Buenos Aires, Rosario and La Plata. He presents his work at the “XIX Salón Nacional de Bellas Artes” where he gets the First Prize in painting with his work Feria (Street market); in September of that same year he inaugurates his fourth individual exhibition at Amigos del Arte and participates in the selection of paintings which will appear in post cards that this institution would print eventually.
In 1930 he is named artistic advisor of the Asociación Wagneriana and director of its Plastic Arts Section. That same year he organizes the “Salón de Pintores Modernos. Primer Grupo” in Buenos Aires; exhibits at Amigos del Arte, at the “Salón de Pintores y Escultores Modernos” and at show rooms in Rosario and Santa Fe.
In January, 1931 he takes part in the “First Baltimore Pan-American Exhibition of Contemporary Paintings” and is awarded the Museum of Art Award with his piece Anunciación (Announcement), which he later donates to the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes de Buenos Aires. That same year he organizes exhibits of Miguel Carlos Victorica and Demetrio Urruchúa in Amigos del Arte and, in May, Guttero presents his work at the Salón Centenario de Montevideo, “Primer Grupo Argentino de Pintores Modernos”. In June he directs together with Falcini, courses on Plastic Art and works on stage scenery for the Colón Theater. Also in 1931, he organizes the “Salón de Pintores Modernos” in Amigos del Arte and takes part at the Salón Nacional, being awarded the Eduardo Sívori Prize. On April 15, 1932 they open together with Pedro Domínguez Neira, Raquel Forner and Alfredo Bigatti the Cursos Libres de Arte Plástico (Free plastic art courses). That same year Guttero is awarded the First Municipal Prize for his work Oda (Ode).
In November, he is invited to take part in the “Salón de Arte del Cincuentenario de La Plata” and, on December 1, he dies in Buenos Aires at the age of 50. The following year, between October and November, the Dirección Nacional de Bellas Artes organizes the “Exposición Homenaje al Pintor Alfredo Guttero”. In 1987, an exhibit honoring the artist takes place at the Salas Nacionales de Exposición and between September 1 and October 31, 2006, the Museo de Arte Latinoamericano de Buenos Aires holds the “Alfredo Guttero, un artista moderno en acción” exhibit.
His work can be found at the following museums: Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, Museo Municipal de Artes Plásticas “Eduardo Sivori”; the municipal and provincial museums in Santa Fe, Rosario, San Juan, Paraná and Olavarría. His work makes up numerous local and international private collections.