WIESBADEN, GERMANY--(Marketwire - Nov 27, 2012) - Born in 1930 in Huesca, Spain, Antonio Saura (1930--1998) is without doubt one of the most important artists of the 20th century and one of the key protagonists of Spanish painting of his day.
Saura was self-taught as an artist and initially was influenced by Yves Tanguy and Joan Mirò. Seeking a "real landscape of the unconscious", from 1950 onwards he produced strongly Surrealist pieces.
Shortly before breaking with the Surrealists in 1955 he experimented with various techniques, such as grattages and rayogrammes, and these created new opportunities for him.
From 1956 onwards he pursued two thematic cycles, Women and Self-Portraits, developing a very idiosyncratic, expressive and gestural oeuvre. In 1957, together with Manuel Millarès, Rafael Canogar and other like-minded individuals he founded the artists' group "El Paso". At about the same time he made his first Crucifixions, which took their cue from Diego Velázquez' painting Crucified Christ in the Prado in Madrid. As of 1959 he dedicated his efforts to series of large-sized canvases (Shrouds, Portraits, Nudes, Crowds of People), and was repeatedly to return to these themes in his later work. These pieces were followed by cycles of Portraits and his Vertical Women. He also produced iron sculptures and illustrated literary works. In his cycles Goya's Dog and his portraits of Dora Maar (1983 onwards) he focused on key works by Goya and Picasso. Saura also bequeathed us an important literary Tmuvre.
This major retrospective has been organized together with the Antonio Saura Foundation Archives in Geneva and Kunstmuseum Bern and features some 200 pieces; it covers all the different periods in the oeuvre of this renowned Spanish painter.