Recent works by Antoni Tąpies can be seen at Toni Tąpies Gallery
, owned by the son of the Contemporary Spanish artist. This new exhibition gathers 17 new paintings, some of them in large format, but all of which take on the theme that has surrounded the artist since many years ago: symbols and signs. Almost of all of the works have been created during his stay at Campins, at the foot of Montseny.
A new element in these recent works is the use of marble powder, which adds substance to the paintings, together with collages and mixed media. At 86, Tąpies said about his Works: It is the same Tąpies, but more synthesized, more condensed.
Antoni Tąpies is one of the famous artists of European abstract expressionism. After studying law for 3 years, he devoted himself from 1943 onwards only to his painting. He is perhaps the best-known Catalan artist to emerge in the period since the Second World War.
In 1950 he held his first solo exhibition, at Galeries Laietanes, Barcelona. In the early 50s he lived in Paris, to where he has often returned. Both in Europe and beyond, the highly influential French critic and curator Michel Tapié (no relation, despite the similar name) enthusiastically promoted the work of Antoni Tąpies.
In 1948, Tąpies helped co-found the first Post-War Movement in Spain known as Dau-al-Set which was connected to the Surrealist and Dadaist Movements. The main leader and founder of Dau-al-Set was the poet Joan Brossa. The movement also had a publication of the same name, Dau-al-Set. Tąpies started as a surrealist painter, his early works were influenced by Paul Klee and Joan Miró; but soon become an abstract expressionist, working in a style known as "Arte Povera", in which non artistic materials are incorporated into the paintings. In 1953 he began working in mixed media; this is considered his most original contribution to art. One of the first to create serious art in this way, he added clay and marble dust to his paint and used waste paper, string, and rags (Grey and Green Painting, Tate Gallery, London, 1957).
His international reputation was well established by the end of the 50s. From the late 50s to early 60s, Tąpies worked with Enrique Tįbara, Antonio Saura, Manolo Millares and many other Spanish Informalist artists. From about 1970 (influenced by Pop art) he began incorporating more substantial objects into his paintings, such as parts of furniture. Tąpies's ideas have had worldwide influence on art, especially in the realms of painting, sculpture, etchings and lithography. Examples of his work are found in numerous major international collections.
Fundació Tąpies, in Barcelona, is a museum dedicated to his life and work. He currently is living in Barcelona.