Antoni Tàpies

Antoni Tàpies (1923 - 2012) was born in Barcelona, Spain. He began painting during a long illness at the age of 17. He enrolled in Law at the Universitat de Barcelona in 1944 but abandoned the course two years later to study art and literature. He had his first solo show in 1950 at the Galeries Laietanes, Barcelona. Tàpies often applyed unconventional materials to his paintings, such as chalk, sand and earth, before scratching or marking the surface with graffiti. He was also a prolific graphic artist, producing a large body of prints and books.

Tàpies exhibited extensively throughout his lifetime. Notable solo exhibitions include retrospectives at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York (1995, 1962); Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (1973); Nationalgalerie, Berlin (1974); Albright-Knox Art Gallery, New York, which travelled to Chicago, San Antonio, Iowa, and Montreal (1977); and Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid (1990). He represented Spain in the Venice Biennale in 1993, winning the Golden Lion. In 2013 Tàpies was the subject of a series of major museum surveys at the Fundació Antoni Tàpies, Barcelona; Palazzo Fortuny, Venice; and Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain.

In 1966 he began a collection of writings entitled, La practica de l'art. The following year he published the book Frègoli, a collaboration with poet Joan Brossa; a second joint effort, Nocturn matinal, was published in 1970. Tàpies received the Rubens Prize of Siegen, West Germany, in 1972. In 1990 he founded the Fundació Antoni Tàpies in Barcelona, established for the study and exhibition of modern and contemporary art.

Tàpies's work is included in numerous public and private collections internationally including Tate, London; Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna, Rome; Le Centre Pompidou, Paris; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; National Gallery of Modern Art, New Dehli; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Solomon R. Guggenheim, New York; and Museum of Modern Art, New York.

 Antoni Tàpies died aged 88 in 2012 in Barcelona, Spain.

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