The works of Joan Miró are among the most widely recognised of any modern artist. Famed for saying that he had come 'to assassinate painting', Miró nevertheless made a huge contribution to the art of the twentieth century, redefining again and again what could be done on canvas, in sculpture or in print.
For the first time this book examines Miró's legacy through the context of the turbulent times in which he lived. Miró placed his art at the service of the Republic during the Spanish Civil War, but while Picasso vowed never to return to a Spain ruled by General Franco, Miró chose internal exile, living and working for much of his career on the island of Mallorca. Focusing primarily on Miró's politically engaged art, the authors reveal him to be no less committed than his contemporaries. From the rural, anarchist and Catalan nationalist themes of early paintings The Farm 1920-21 and Head of a Catalan Peasant 1924-5, through to The Hope of a Condemned Man triptych of 1974, by which he publicly declared himself in opposition to Franco, Miró's commitment to freedom of expression underpinned his art throughout his long and productive career.
Drawing on new scholarship, with essays by a selection of international authorities, this lavishly illustrated book accompanies the most comprehensive Miró exhibition in Britain for nearly half a century, throwing new light on the life and career of one of the greatest artists of modern times.
Marko Daniel is Convener of Adult Programmes at Tate Modern.
Matthew Gale is Head of Displays and Curator, Modern Art at Tate Modern.
Contributors: Christopher Green, former Deputy Director at The Courtauld Institute; Kerryn Greenberg, Assistant Curator at Tate Modern; William Jeffett, Chief Curator of Exhibitions at Salvador Dalí Museum; María Luisa Lax, Head of Collections at Fundació Pilar i Joan Miró; Robert S. Lubar, Director of Masters Studies and Associate Professor of Fine Arts at New York University; Joan M. Minguet Batllori, Professor of the History of Contemporary Art and Cinema at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona; and Teresa Montaner, Curator at Fundació Joan Miró.
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