Picasso and Spanish Modernity. Works from the Museo Reina Sofía Collection in Palazzo Strozzi, Florence, Italy

Salvador Dalí Arlequin
Salvador Dalí Arlequin

The exhibition Picasso and Spanish Modernity, made up of a selection of almost 90 works42 of them of Picasso– from the Museo Reina Sofía Collection, represents multiple approaches to the plastic and poetic foundations in Pablo Picasso’s most decisive contributions, as well as those by the Spanish artists involved in the creation of Modern Art.

Not only is there a consideration of Picasso’s influence on Modern Art in Spain, but also, primarily, it aims to show the most original and important characteristics in the artistic sensibility with which the artist and other Spanish creators contributed to the international arts scene.

As a result, the exhibition refers to the role of Picasso as both artist and myth, putting forward the idea of variation as an element that distinguishes his concept of modernity, embarking on a journey through the way he approached the transfer of meanings, figures and symbols from the representation of monstrosity and tragedy, arriving at the realisation of Guernica.

The exhibition, always based on Picasso, in addition to his relationships with Juan Gris, Joan Miró, Julio González, Salvador Dalí, Óscar Domínguez and Antoni Tàpies, considers, on one side, the singular – and relatively unknown – Spanish contribution to the art of the constructed form, both specific and analytical, while on the other, the new lyricism represented by the painting of signs, surfaces and sculpture understood as “drawing in space”.

Moreover, it analyses the distinctive dialectics of Spanish creation between realism and super-realism, delving deeper into another creative register, into the powerful relationship between nature and culture as an expression of identity, established by artists rooted in their places of origin or vernaculars.

The exhibit, curated by Eugenio Carmona, concludes with an approach to the way Spanish artists foresaw the shift towards another notion of modernity through a chronological and aesthetic opening that moved in the direction of the present.

Some of these ways of understanding and assembling contributions to Spanish plastic modernity are considered for the first time in an exhibition and are the result of studies and work to comprehend and recover carried out in recent decades. Thus, the exhibition constitutes an attempt to reconsider Modern Art by approaching it with originality and from unconventional points of view.

The list of Spanish artists is formed by por Rafael Barradas, Aurelio Bibiano de Arteta, María Blanchard, Francisco Bores, Eduardo Chillida, Martín Chirino, Pancho Cossío, Leandre Cristòfol, Salvador Dalí, Josep de Togores, Óscar Domínguez, Equipo 57, Ángel Ferrant, Pablo Gargallo, Julio González, Juan Gris, José Guerrero, Antonio López, Maruja Mallo, Manuel Millares, Joan Miró, Manuel Ángeles Ortiz, Jorge Oteiza, Pablo Palazuelo Pablo Picasso, Benjamín Palencia, Alfonso Ponce de León, Alberto Sánchez, Antonio Saura, José Gutiérrez Solana, Joaquín Sunyer, Antoni Tàpies, Joaquín Torres García, José Val del Omar, Daniel Vázquez Díaz and Esteban Vicente.

Touring exhibition:

Palazzo Strozzi, Florence (Italy): 20 September, 2014 – 25 January, 2015

Organised by:

Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi

Curated by:

Eugenio Carmona