Mx Watson
Mx Watson

Mx Watson (previously Josie Watson) is a painter and art director from Argentina who identifies as a non-binary person.

Mx Watson began to paint characteristically with black colour after an accident they had at the age of two, when they drowned in the swimming pool of their family’s house. After seven days in a coma and already back home, they would only relax when asking their father -the one who had taken them out of the swimming pool and given them first aids- to put their feet in the water of swimming pool and wait for some minutes. Even at that age, it was striking how much their character had changed.

Their primary school paintings were flooded with the colour black, which they used in colourful compositions to the fore. Their parents supported them in their dedication to painting, but at the same time were concerned about their fixation with this colour. They found them a private painting studio, and slyly removed the black tube from the oil’s box. Mx Watson had some memory problems, so they did not notice the absence consciously.


They attended painting classes with religious urge from the age of 10 years old. They developed as a self-taught painter and won several prizes at a very young age. On repeated occasions when nominated for an award the jury would politely tell them things like, “Thank you dear, but we have to give this to your father”, or, after the jury would be told the little artist was the author of the artwork then they would turn suspiciously to ask, “So, Who is your -male- teacher?”, as for some reason everyone expected a man to be the painter.

They consecrated their work at the Banco Ciudad auctions at only 21 years old. It was only after repeated sales that did they dared to present themselves in person in the art world. It was then when they where looked bottom up and mistreately asked “Who is your hairy arm?”, “Who is your lover”, “Who is your millionaire parent?” or “Oh! I thought you were a 60 years old man, schotish and most likely a strong whisky drinker”. The art work of Mx Watson (previously Josie Watson) is still usually confused to be the craftmanship of an old male artist.

The colour black returned to their palette when, at the age of 17, they submitted a painting to a competition organised by an artshop that gifted sample products to entrants. Mx Watson received a 60 ml bottle of black oil paint. As they took it in their hand they felt that there was some sense that they have been missing for a long time. They took the material and began to use it in their practices.

A few months later they began to feel some very strong sensations as they approached the same pool where the accident would have happened. Under a characteristic numbness a set of basic forms in black and white would repeatedly pass through their mind, each one accompanied by a very strong emotion. The final image’s emotion would make them feel an immeasurable happiness, unbearable to stand, making them beg to get out of the trance, which would then take only one more second to stop abruptly.

After this episode repeated several times, the artist took a therapy based in Jungian vivid dreams. This was how they discovered that they were reliving the drowning once or several times a day since they were 2 years old. Painting, sometimes compulsive, belonged to this impulse, it was the only channel to embrace the moment fully. Painting is for Mx Watson to deliberately return to that space and time, to create.

From a black creative space emerged the “automatisms”. This where automatic drawing exercises that Mx Watson developed to become free from social constructs and reconnect to their own creative force without external suggestions. A characteristic mixture of automatic black and white lines became their personal style.

As for their education, they were aware of the arrival of the new digital media, as well as the importance of tradition. Deliverately they studied for a few years to become an art teacher, but finished their studies in a higher technical degree in digital visual arts and communication. This allowed them to combine both worlds and develop the knowledge for the development of interactive art. They worked as a digital illustrator and graphic designer before introducing Augmented Reality into their own work.

In 2009 they met a group of established painters of the 90s: Miguel Lesacano Tena, Martín Riwnij, Adrián Lirman, Alejandro Boim, Ricardo Celma, entre otros. Under the influence of these artists they devoted themselves to the production of “Automatic City” (of Buenos Aires).

From 2010 to 2011 they worked as an assistant at the auction house Arroyo Remates SRL where they met renowned contemporary Argentinean artists and got to see their work first handed. Among these artists Adolfo Nigro and César López Osornio (Director of the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de La Plata) left a deep imprint in their career when selecting their artwork in the first auctions for emerging artists of the city of Buenos Aires, hosted by the official bak of the city: Banco Ciudad.

Their work was presented for the first time at ArteBa 2005 under the auspices of Banco Ciudad. Mx Watson sold their paintings in the auctions with great success for several years. In 2016 they were recategorized into the category of contemporary artists and participated in highlighted auctions.

In 2017 they felt the need to get closer to their own generation and developed an interactive art exhibition inspired by the series of paintings “Ciudad Automática”. The exhibition was sponsored by Banco Ciudad and financed through a patronage programe of the city of Buenos Aires.

The exhibition intertwined painting, drawing, literature, digital projections, interactive installations, a performance, original music, animations, an App and Augmented Reality to create a milennial form of urban expression.

This exhibition was invited to the Salón de Honor of the Legislatura Porteña recognising the artwork of Mx Watson (at that time Josie Watson).

Through this experience, Mx Watson understood the importance of enhancing cultural heritage through the careful use of new digital arts and technologies. In 2018, to deepen this concept they took a postgraduate course in heritage preservation at the University of Tres de Febrero under the auspices of FEDESPA (Federation of Spanish Societies in Argentina). In parallel they created the brand WatsOnArt®, inaugurating it on the night of the museums with a presentation at “Los 36 Billares”, on Avenida de Mayo in the city of Buenos Aires.


In 2019 Mx Watson traveled to Europe on a tour with exhibitions in Paris, London and Berlin. The outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic made them pause their trip in Berlin, where they received the sponsorship of “Monopol”, a Cultural Centre in the area of Reinickendorf in Berlin, for a free studio for a limited time of 18 months inside an old abandoned factory, a former GDR distillery.

During this time, under the influence and study of German expressionism, German culture, the architecture of the former GDR, the work of Albert Einstein, and the artwork of Käthe Kollwitz, they developed their work in a new series entitled “Automatic City: Zeitgesit”.

“I understood the image, that which concerns my profession as a painter, as the set of coincidences that orbiting over thousands of streaks of time are composed for a millisecond showing a certain and irreproducible reality. To work on wood is not only to add to time – alteration and decomposition – but to start my work from time. I try to go where time is after death.”

Currently Mx Watson lives and works in Berlin. Their artwork belongs mainly to private collections in Argentina, and also in Hong Kong, Canada, USA and Germany.

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