The Uruguayan artist Javier Gil began his studies in 1978 at the Instituto de Bellas Artes San Francisco de Asís in Montevideo with Clever Lara and Fredie Faux. In 1980 he studied at the Escuela Estímulo de Bellas Artes in Buenos Aires, then in the late 1980s learned engraving with David Finckweiner at the Museo de Artes Visuales and recording with Luis Camnitzer in Valdotabo, Italy.
In 1989 Gil participated in the creation of a gigantic mural at Saint Larry-Soulan to celebrate the bicentennial of the French Revolution; the mural was exhibited in Bordeaux, Nantes, Toulouse, and at the Pompidou Museum in Paris.
Gil’s first solo exhibition was Von Kopf bis Fuss: Fragmente des Körpers (From Head to Toe: Fragments of the Body) at the Ursula Blickle Stiftung in Kraichtal-Unteröwisheim in 1997. It was during the second half of the 1990s, while he was exploring ways of depicting the stark corporeality of the human body, that Javier Gil became fascinated by the transgressive texts of Sade, Bataille and Duras, producing new powerful works at a rapid rate. He exhibited his ‘Philosophie dans le boudoir’ sequence at the Beate Uhse Erotik Museum in Berlin in 1997, his ‘Le mort’ series at the Frankfurt Kunstverein in 1998, and a large collection of erotic work at the Galerie les Larmes d’Eros in Paris in 1999. He spent extended periods of time in 1997 and 1998 in Frankfurt, where a deep and important relationship also inspired his work.
After 2001, Gil’s repertoire expanded into more surrealist subjects, including his trademark distorted urban landscapes. His most recent exhibition was Blanes Ocupado at Museo Blanes in Montevideo in 2016. He now exhibits mostly in Uruguay, but has also had exhibitions in Italy and Germany.