Trained as a printmaker, Portilla works on video and performance art and sound. His narratives talk about the every day life in Quito, Ecuador. Portilla earned his degree in art from the Central University of Ecuador in Quito. He has served as the director of Pan Con Cola Productions since 1998 and as a professor in the college of contemporary art at the University of San Francisco in Quito since 2002.
Portilla has had exhibits of his artwork displayed across the world, most notably in Hamburg and Berlin in 2005, New York City in 2002 and Copenhagen in 2000. He gave a multimedia presentation, "Tercermundista Forever," on September 15 that was open to the public. His narratives focused on everyday life in his native Quito, Ecuador. Cesar met with several art department classes as well as Modern Language classes. He gave an evening presentation in Spanish and spent an afternoon with the Studio Practicum class giving critiques.