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Joan Miró

Miró, Joan (zhōänˈ mērōˈ) [key], 1893–1983, Spanish surrealist painter. After studying in Barcelona, Miró went to Paris in 1919. In the 1920s he came into contact with cubism and surrealism. His work has been characterized as psychic automatism, an expression of the subconscious in free form. By 1930, Miró had developed a lyrical style that remained fairly consistent. It is distinguished by the use of brilliant pure color and the playful juxtaposition of delicate lines with abstract, often amebic shapes (e.g., Dog Barking at the Moon, 1926; Philadelphia Mus. of Art). In some of his works there is a distinct undertone of nightmare and horror. After 1941, Miró lived mainly in Majorca. He painted murals for hotels in New York City and Cincinnati and for the Graduate Center at Harvard. In 1958 he completed ceramic decorations for the UNESCO buildings in Paris. Many of his canvases are in the Museum of Modern Art and Guggenheim Museum.

See studies by J. T. Soby (1959), U. Apolonio (tr. 1969), and R. Penrose (1971).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: European Art, 1600 to the Present: Biographies


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