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First London Exhibition in Over 40 Years by Juan Genovés Opens at Marlborough in October
Juan Genovés, Palenque, 2009, acrylic on canvas on board, 150 x 120 cm.

LONDON. The Directors of Marlborough Fine Art announced the first London exhibition in over 40 years by the Spanish artist Juan Genovés of 15 new paintings that will open at Marlborough Fine Art, London on October 29. Born in Valencia in 1930, Genovés has been exhibiting with Marlborough worldwide since 1964.

This exhibition continues Genovés’ exploration of people in groups, depicted through bird’s-eye views of crowds where the absence of buildings, roads, trees or clues to a common landscape creates a dynamic of intensity and dislocation. The motivations for the groups’ activities are never clear, as Genovés allows the viewer to draw his own conclusions.

Genovés’ body of work is devoted to the subject of political engagement, developing his genre amidst the isolated world of Franco’s Spain. He was influenced by modern photography and cinema, especially the work of Sergei Eisenstein. Genovés’ highly painterly style, though seemingly contradictory, worked well to depict the anxiety, fear and desperation that people in society experienced during the Fascist regime. His painting El Abrazo, created near the end of Franco’s regime, just before his death, came to symbolize the desire of most Spaniards for a reconciliation of people in society and the end of the fight between democracy and totalitarianism. When images of this work circulated as a protest poster, Genovés was detained and held in solitary confinement for seven days. Since Franco’s death, Genovés’ work is still engaged with the movement and action of crowds, though while one has the feeling that the subjects in his paintings experience great anxiety, the threat of imminent violence has been removed.

Genovés is the recipient of a number of important prizes including the Mention of Honor at the XXXIII Venice Biennale, 1966; the Gold Medal at the VI Biennale Internazionale de San Marino, 1967; the Premio Nacional de Artes Plasticas, Spain, 1984 and the Premio de las Artes Plásticas de Generalitat Valenciana, Spain, 2002. A retrospective of Genovés’ work will be held at Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, in 2010.

Genovés’ work is found in many of the most important public collections in the United States and Europe, including The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago; Centre National d’Art Contemporain, Paris; The Museum of Modern Art and The Guggenheim Museum, both in New York; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid; Israel Museum, Jerusalem and IVAM, Valencia, among others.

The artist will be in London during the week of October 29th and will be available for interviews.

Marlborough Fine Art | Juan Genovés | London | fascist | Spanish | Valencia |

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August 6, 2009

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