- Benjamín Palencia Barrax, Albacete, Spain, 1894 - Madrid, Spain, 1980
- Technique:Photomontage and collage on paper
- Dimensions:22,2 x 16,5 cm
- Category: Work on paper, Collage
- Entry date:1997
- Register number:AD00457
Along with other kinds of work, Benjamín Palencia’s repertory includes collage and photomontage, steeped in a “Miró-style” sense of humour and never far from experimentation and the Surrealist method. One of the best known and significant of the photomontages is Sin título (Untitled), currently part of the Museo Reina Sofía collection, in which the power of certain images is pitted against the intended “irreverence” of others, as can be clearly seen in the (circus-like) figure, crowned by the head of a Virgin of the Sorrows.
Apart from its intrinsic plastic quality, this photomontage is also remarkable for its documentary value, since it was one of the illustrations for the iconic Aviso de escarmentados del año que acaba y escarmiento de avisados para el año que empieza de 1935 (Warning by Those Who Have Learned Lessons from the Year Just Gone and Lessons by Those Who Have Been Warned for the Coming Year of 1935). This 1934 almanac was one of the publications brought out by the magazine Cruz y Raya, and included major collaborations with José Bergamín, Miguel de Unamuno, Juan Larrea, Pablo Neruda, Leopoldo Eulogio Palacios, José Antonio Muñoz Rojas and Ramón Gómez de la Serna. The photomontages, of which Sin título is one, and the illustrative drawings, were done by Benjamín Palencia.
Paloma Esteban Leal