The work of Juan Giralt (Madrid, 1940–2007) was initially self-taught in the Informalism that predominated the 1950s. A brief spell in Holland at the end of this decade enabled him to come into contact with the CoBrA group and saw him begin to shape a more personal and permeable pictorial language in a new interpretation of Figuration. This characterised his work in the 1970s and 1980s, turning him into a reference point of New Figuration in Madrid. In the years that followed, until his death in 2007, he would gradually incorporate abstraction, but without ever relinquishing figurative elements that were present in the constant use of collage and the painted word.
The exhibition organised by the Museo Reina Sofía for this coming winter has a sharper focus on the last period of Giralt’s career, and sequentially displays his breakaway from Informalism through certain works on paper that represent his work in the 1970s. Moreover, they anticipate his later explorations into Figuration and Abstraction, a dilemma which, under expressive and analytical tension, runs through his whole pictorial progression and which he overcame via the highly personal synthesis of both styles, eventually arriving at a denial of their difference.