He studied with Leopoldo Romañach, another famous Cuban painter, and by age 19 his talent started to become evident. Nevertheless, he performed his first personal exhibition as late as 1924 (when he was 26 years old). In 1925, he travels abroad, visiting France. It is in Montparnasse that a group of French artists advised him to sign his paintings only as Víctor Manuel (until that moment, he used his entire name and surname).
He returns home in 1927, and participates in an exhibition at the Painters and Sculptors Association of Havana, that is considered one of the starting points of Cuban modern painting era. In this time, he dedicated himself, for almost two years, to train other Cuban painters free of charge. Afterwards, he returns to Europe, visiting Spain and Belgium, returning to Cuba again in 1929. It is in this year that he creates his most famous painting: La Gitana Tropical ("The Tropical Gipsy"), considered by critics to be one of the defining pieces of Cuban Avant-garde.
He was very inconsistent in signing his work. He ranged from a simple "VICTOR MANUEL" capitalized signature, to fluid and complicated script, to not signing his paintings at all, and he even used a pseudonym in a period of his life .
His subjects were the constant point of his work. He was eminently a portraitist of female faces, as well as painter of landscapes, both rural and urban.
He obtains a first prize in 1935, in an art exhibition at Havana's Lyceum, and continues exhibiting his works in Cuba and abroad.
He died on 1969, in Havana.