The personal adoption of Surrealism by Joan Miró (Barcelona, 1893 - Palma de Mallorca, 1983), combined with his original conception of Abstraction, means he becomes a unique example of creativity. Despite considering himself a painter, Miró also displays his genius through his extensive output of sculptures and etchings, which in turn lead him to be classified as one of the most relevant artists of the 20th century.
This exhibition presents a carefully selected range of his works in the Sala de Arte Fundación Telefónica in Santiago de Chile, the location where in 2002 the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía takes the work of Spanish abstract artists in Abstracciones 1955-2002. One year earlier in the same space, the Museo Reina Sofía also exhibited the series of 'painted poems' entitled Salle XIV, by Vicente Huidobro, the Chilean artist who is key to the genesis of Ultraism and a friend of Miró's in Paris in the Twenties and Thirties.
The selection of works on display, which belong to the Museo Reina Sofía, span from 1935 to 1981, two years before his death. This period begins with Miró's interest in the object, which leads him to produce Surrealist collages and sculptures. The exhibition goes right up to the final period, where Informalism and Abstraction are discernible in large-scale pieces.
The pieces represent three of the predominant disciplines in Miró's work - painting, sculpture and etchings. The six canvases displayed - Tête d’homme (1935), Peinture (1949), Peinture (1950), La danse des coquelicots (1973), Personnage, oiseaux (1974) and Paysage (1976) - trace a line, from, as the artist himself professes, the desire to “assassinate painting” to the command of composition and colour in his final works.
His three-dimensional production carves out two lines of work: one that captures his approach to the world of ceramics through Josep Llorens Artigas with Femme dans la nuit (1967) and Femme (1968), and the other in its connection to Surrealism, where waste objects form the basis of his work, as can be seen in Torse de femme (1967).
Finally, thirty works created with etching, aquatint and lithograph techniques are displayed, including the series Trazado sobre la pared (1967-1968) and Archipiélago salvaje (1970). For Miró etching represents a field of experimentation and discovery, and he is educated in some of the finest studios such as Atelier 17 with William Hayter, and the Lacourière studio in Paris. His command of techniques enables him to take his experimentations beyond orthodox procedures and traditional supports.
National Palace of Culture NDK, Sofia (May 11 - June 20, 2004); Szépművészeti Múzeum, Budapest (July 6 - September 30, 2004)