The sculpture produced by Daniel González in Paris in the 1920s and early 30s was part of the modern renewal of realism, in parallel with other investigations by international sculptors. González’s second move to the French capital in 1919 was definitive, and it was there that he produced all of his mature work until 1931. He sculpted stripped-down portraits based both on the synthetic sense of the work of Basque sculptor Francisco Durrio, who he shared a studio with in Paris, and the capacity for formal invention within the framework of figuration in Henri Matisse’s sculpture. The sobriety and purity of the line is linked to an early immersion in the poetics of the return to order of the inter-war years, and represents something of a return to reality for Cubism. González’s sculptural work, being fed into by both realist and avant-garde models, is comparable to the modern realism of sculptors like Jacques Lipchitz. Despite the reprisals against his family following the Civil War, Daniel González’s bronze Autorretrato (Self-Portrait) was placed in the national collection of Madrid’s Museum of Modern Art as early as 1947.
Carmen Fernández Aparicio