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Joan Miro

18 September 1998 - 10 January 1999

The Louisiana Museum of Modern Art has the great pleasure of inviting members of the press on Thursday 17 September 1998, at 1Oam to preview the Joan Miro exhibition. Director Steingrim Laursen will give an introduction to the exhibition, and at 12 noon the Louisiana Museum will be pleased to see you for lunch at the Museum Cafe.

After a summer marked by Louisiana!s 40th anniversary the museum opens the autumn season with a major Miro exhibition, a retrospective survey of Joan Miro's extensive work. The exhibition, comprising 140 works, mainly paintings, drawings and sculpture, was originally conceived by the Moderna Museet, Stockholm where it was shown this summer. The presentation at Louisiana will include an additional eighteen works. During a visit to the Miro family on Mallorca this June, the organizer of the exhibition, Steingrim Laursen, succeeded in negotiating the loan of ten major works from members of the family. With the further loan of eight other works dating from different periods of Miro's career, the original exhibition concept will be considerably expanded.

During this visit, Louisiana was also promised that the artist's grandchild, Joan Punyet Miro, would supplement the exhibition with a lecture in which he will discuss Miro's art, based on the works displayed.

Today, Miro is often classified as a Surrealist, even though his work spans a much wider range. His artistic idiom matured in the course of the 1920s and 30s, distinguished by technical and formal experiments of unmistakable personal and poetic power. Toward the end of the 1930~, his work showed a certain frustration and grimness of mood, caused by the advance of civil war and the threat of fascism. After the war, Miro was recognized as one the greatest contemporary artists. During the 1940s and 50s his tonal range was reduced and his formal idiom concentrated to a few abstract figures. Although his work might suggest automatism, Miro seldom used this intuitive method. Rather, he moved freely back and forth between consciously designed compositions and a more spontaneous way of working. It was not until the 1960s that his abstract paintings were created, characterized by a simplicity of expression which was to significantly influence American abstract expressionism.


The Louisiana Revy

In connection with the exhibition, a special issue of the Louisiana Revy will be published. It will contain an article by Ragnar von Holten, Senior curator at the Moderna Museet and organizer of the exhibition, focusing on Miro's work in relation to Surrealism. Another article, by the French Miro expert Jacques Dupin, will provide a biographical approach to Miro, with emphasis on the early works. Finally, in an article by Rosa Maria Malet, director of Fundacio Joan Miro, Barcelona, special attention is given to the graphic work entitled The Barcelona Series. The catalogue's introduction is written by curator Steingrim Laursen.

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