Joan Miró (1893-1983) is considered to be one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. His unique and original style, marked by simple shapes, primary colours
and experimentation with new materials,
has turned him into a benchmark for many creators.
When he was just 14 years old, he started to study commerce as per the instructions of his father, who at the same time accepted having him enrolled in night classes in drawing at the La Llotja in Barcelona “as a pastime”. It was in 1911, during his stay at Mont-Roig del Camp
recovering from an illness, when he firmly decided to become a painter. Neither his international fame, nor his stays in Paris, New York or Japan would alienate him ever from the countryside of the Baix Camp
, the key to his artistic calling and a source of inspiration, nor from his Catalan roots.
After his first artistic stage with fauvist, expressionist and cubist influences
nena, 1919; La masia
, 1920), his stay in Paris would bring him into contact with surrealism and dadaism, and his painting would evolve and be realised from conventionalism and academicism. In his particular surrealist vision
, Miró was inspired by the irrational and transformed objects and people into symbols and shapes that mixed the geometric with the organic. El carnaval d’Arlequí
(1924) and El gos bordant a la lluna
(1926) are very significant works.
The start of international recognition
of his work, with the purchase of parts for part of the MoMA in New York in 1928, coincided with his most rebellious stage, marked by his desire to “kill” the classic idea of painting
. For this entire life, he would experiment with new techniques and expressions
such as collages, engravings, ceramics, tapestry, sculpture, scenography, swinging constantly between figuration and abstraction
. Starting in the 60’s, we would invent a new language, where his characteristic mythology (woman, bird, star, moon and sun) would take on a very explicit meaning (L'or de l'atzur
He fled from the public eye, often taking refuge in his study in Palma. This did not prevent Miró from expressing his rage and sensitivity for big events in his time
(the Spanish Civil War and the Second World War) through his work: Natura morta del sabatot
(1937) or his series Constel·lacions
(1939-1941). And even his years of international recognition, with retrospectives in the most prestigious museums, did not hinder his fighting spirit. Examples include the fabrics that he burned and put holes into in 1973 in protest against the repression of Franco.
One of the best collections of the artist’s work can be found in the Fundació Joan Miró
in Barcelona, which opened its doors in 1975. There are also important collections of his in the Fundació Pilar i Joan Miró in Palma de Mallorca, at the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, in the MoMA and Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Tate Modern Museum in London and the Moderna Museet Museum in Stockholm, among others.