Uruguay is presenting Joaquin Torres Garcia to the World.
Joaquin Torres Garcia is a national hero in Uruguay and was an innovator of art. His work is praised and celebrated with patriotic pride.
He had a strong conviction in what art should be. His credo was based on rational and universal recovery of the spirit. What is clear is, that exerted an extraordinary seduction that was as firm as his own convictions.
When he returned to Uruguay in 1934 after 43 years in Europe and in the United States, he founded a school that became the national academy par excellence.
Torres gave, since arriving in Montevideo, countless lectures and wrote thousands of pages of philosophical and artistic conceptions and created some of his most important works and led a generation of artists through his workshop.
Since Torres existence, the picture of the national art changed forever and generations of artists developed a style that influenced and defined Uruguay.
When we think of Joaquin Torres Garcia, we think of his calendars, their symbols and primary colors. His creations came as a result of Joaquin Torres Garcia´s dissatisfaction. None of the vanguards of the twentieth century convinced him completely. So he embarked on creating his own way to represent the world pictorially.
Since the early 1917, the artist went through a process that guided him toward designing his own movement. He used objects to represent them symbolically. Instead of presenting a jar with its volume, shade and color, he represented it in a schematic way or according to what the object represents bringing associations, which has to do with surrealism.
By bringing together different aspects it is how he created its constructive universalism. The aim was clear: to represent the physical and the spiritual world. „He saw that surrealism only represented the world of the unconscious, without references with reality.“
That was how the work of Torres Garcia transcended the boundaries of art and became a popular iconography of Uruguay. Uruguayans have assimilated constructivism as something that defines and influences them, art in every corner of Montevideo.
Torres back to USA and Europe
A long trip of his most famous paintings is taking place: Montevideo – MoMA New York – Madrid- Malaga.
The 17 month trip has been planned carefully and to the detail. The itinerary which started in New York then continued to Madrid, with Malaga as a next destination before returning to Montevideo. It is a unique event that involved a team of curators making sure the paintings, nearly 100 years old, were in good conditions and could withstand the long trip. The famous Venezuelan Curator Perez- Oramás, expert in Latin American Art from MoMA arrived in Montevideo to personally make sure of this.
So Torres Garcia`s works owned by National Museum of Visual Arts traveled to New York with the most inexorable of the rigors. It included a collection of universal art, abstract shapes, constructive paintings, two of which had never left Uruguay, sculptures and toys.
Torres Garcia in New York
The prestigious Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), a world leader of modern art in the heart of New York inaugurated a retrospective of Joaquín Torres-García with 190 works, including paintings, toys, drawings, frescoes, collages, sculptures and manuscripts.
The exhibit is a comprehensive retrospective ranging from his early works in Barcelona in the late nineteenth century, to his last productions in 1949 that was held in Montevideo.
Torres Garcia in Madrid.
After his success at MoMA in New York, the exhibition Joaquín Torres García, a modern Arcadia was launched in Madrid, in the Espacio Fundación Telefónica, where it will stay until the 11th of September. The Madrid show has 11 works that were not in New York. Among them, the fresco Torres Garcia painted for his home in Barcelona, La terra, Enes and panes, 1914.
The official opening of the exhibition took place on Wednesday 18th of May. In attendance, was Alejandro Diaz, director of the Museo Torres Garcia, Montevideo, who gave great collaboration in preparing for this international exhibition. During the next four months the exhibition will last, this space will be hosting a series of educational workshops for different audiences, to spread the work of this renowned Uruguayan painter.
Torres García in Malaga
This exhibition will then travel to the Picasso Museum in Malaga, where it will be from October 10th to February 5th , 2017.
We are talking about one of the most important artists in Latin America, Torres Garcia is the bow that unites all forms of modernity that appeared in Latin America and Europe.
Mary Ann Thompson