Winner of Spanish National Visual Arts Prize in 1986 and Prince of Asturias Arts Prize in 2003, the artist from Mallorca Miquel Barceló will represent Spain at the 53rd Venice Biennale opening this coming month of June.
Curated by Enrique Juncosa, director of IMMA
( Irish Museum of Modern Art) in Dublin , the exhibition features recent large format paintings alongside other older ones to comprise a survey of Barcelós work since 2000. Titled simply Miquel Barceló, the show revolves around the artists perennial themes, like primates, African landscapes and the foam of ocean waves. Barceló (Mallorca, 1957) is generally recognised as one of Spain s most influential living painters. The exhibition also features a series of works by the French artist and writer François Augiéras (1925-1971), whose work renders small format representations of African genre scenes.
With over one hundred years to its credit, the Venice Biennale is one of the worlds top contemporary art events. Spain has been actively present at the biennale since its inaugural event in 1895. And since 1950, the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation under the auspices of its Directorate of Cultural and Scientific Relations coordinates the Spanish participation at this international forum, as part of its ongoing promotion of and support for Spanish artists abroad. For the upcoming biennale, SEACEX (State Society for Spanish Cultural Action Abroad).
Miquel Barceló came to international prominence following the São Paulo Biennale in 1981 and the Documenta VII in Kassel in 1982, as one of the leading revelations in Spanish art. His work is on view in major museums and art centres around the world and was the subject of an extensive survey at the Centre Pompidou in Paris in 1996. Later, in 2004, Barceló was the first living contemporary painter to exhibit at the Louvre with his series of watercolours created to illustrate the Divine Comedy.
His last major exhibition in Spain, held at CAC Malaga, overviewed twenty years of his work in Africa . The curator of the exhibition was Enrique Juncosa, critic, curator and former deputy director of Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid and of IVAM in Valencia, who is teaming up again with Barceló for the Spanish Pavilion at the Venice Biennale.
Miquel Barceló lives between Paris, Mallorca and Mali.