Biography and History

Silvina Ocampo was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1903, the youngest of the six daughters of Manuel Silvino Ocampo and Ramona Aguierre. One of her older sisters was Victoria Ocampo, the editor of Sur magazine. As a young woman Ocampo lived in Paris and studied painting under Fernand Leger and Giorgio de Chirico. Throughout her life, she combined art and writing, often illustrating the verse of others as well as her own. She died in 1993.

Ocampo met fellow Argentine writer Adolfo Bioy Casares in 1933, and seven years later the couple married. That same year, 1940, Ocampo exhibited her paintings in Buenos Aires for the first time. In 1954, Ocampo and Bioy Casares' only daughter, Marta, was born.

Ocampo maintained a close friendship with Jorge Luis Borges, and he was the one of the first to praise her poetry. Both Ocampo and Bioy Casares engaged in creative collaboration with Borges; Antología de la literatura fantástica (Buenos Aires: Sudamericana, 1940) and Antología poética argentina (Buenos Aires: Sudamericana, 1941) were co-authored by the trio. Ocampo produced a sizeable body of work, both poetry and prose, and received several awards for her writing:

• second prize at the National Poetry Competition (Argentina) of 1953 for Los nombres

• first prize at the National Poetry Competition (Argentina) of 1962 for Lo amargo por dulce

• Premio Club de los XIII (Argentina) of 1988 for Cornelia frente al espejo

• PEN Club Gold Pen

Source: From the finding aid for C0973