136
136

PROPERTY OF A DISTINGUISHED EUROPEAN COLLECTOR

Joan Miró
FORMES
Estimate
300,000400,000
JUMP TO LOT
136

PROPERTY OF A DISTINGUISHED EUROPEAN COLLECTOR

Joan Miró
FORMES
Estimate
300,000400,000
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Impressionist & Modern Art Day Sale

|
New York

Joan Miró
1893 - 1983
FORMES
Signed Miró (center right); signed Joan Miró, titled "Formes" and dated 29/7/35 (on original card backing)
Gouache and brush and ink on paper
14 5/8 by 11 7/8 in.
37.2 by 30.2 cm
Executed on July 29, 1935.
Read Condition Report Read Condition Report

Provenance

Pierre Matisse Gallery, New York
Galerie Nichido, Paris
Acquired in the early 1990s

Literature

Clement Greenberg, Joan Miró, New York, 1948, illustrated p. 9
Jacques Dupin & Ariane Lelong-Mainaud, Joan Miró, Catalogue raisonné, Drawings, vol. I, Paris, 2008, no. 493, illustrated p. 238

Catalogue Note

Formes is a striking example of Miró's art at a time of mounting violence and impending Civil War which was soon to dominate Spain. Executed in late 1935, shortly before the artist's exile to France because of political hostility, Formes captures the essence of much of his output from this period, in its ambiguous and unsettling exploration of degeneration, or in its total abstraction, the artist's experience of society on the brink of chaos. In his works from this period, Miró drew upon a lexicon of hybrid figures, forms, and his Catalan environs to give voice to the emotional battle endured by the Spanish people in the months leading up to the war. Yet Miró's artistic response was not merely a direct reflection of the evils around him; rather, he often intended these pieces as expressions of hope and affirmations of life.

This simple, two-dimensional composition, and its rejection of all modeling and detail in favor of summary brushstrokes, echo the artist's general distaste for traditional styles of representation and prefigure his embrace of greater abstraction in subsequent years. The lack of physical detail afforded to the forms also imbue the image with a playful sense curiosity, all the while evading easy reference to the figural world. This purely plastic aspect of this work separates it from some of the more barbaric symbols that characterized the artist's later work as the Spanish Civil War reached its peak. Miró's ability to create a blend compositional structure yet unidentifiable subject matter seems to lend this picture a great feeling of unease, expectation and perhaps even prophecy. As Jacques Dupin has rightly noted, "It is as though the Spanish tragedy and the Second World War as well...broke out first in the works of this Catalan artist" (Jacques Dupin, Joan Miró: Life and Work, London, 1962, p. 264).

Impressionist & Modern Art Day Sale

|
New York