Joan Miró

It has been possible to establish a chronology of the most relevant aspects of Joan Miró’s personal and artistic life thanks to the Successió Miró’s archives and especially to the work of the Miró Foundation in Barcelona.

Chronology

1893

Birth of Joan Miró i Ferrà on 20 April at Passatge del Crèdit 4, Barcelona. His father, Miquel Miró Adzerias, son of a blacksmith in Cornudella, was a watchmaker and silversmith. His mother, Dolors Ferrà Oromí, was the daughter of a cabinetmaker in Palma de Mallorca.

1900

Begins primary school at Carrer del Regomir. The earliest extant drawings date from this year.


1907

Enrolls at the School of Commerce in Barcelona, and at the same time attends classes at the School of Arts and Crafts and Fine Arts (the Llotja) until 1910. His teachers there are Modest Urgell and Josep Pascó.

1908

Earliest extant oil painting.


1910

Works as an accounts clerk a hardware and chemicals firm in Barcelona.

1911

Is unable to settle in his job. Catches typhoid fever and spends time convalescing in Mont-roig (Tarragona), at the farm recently purchased by his parents.

1912

Decides to devote himself entirely to painting and enrolls in the art school run by Francesc Galí, which he attends until 1915. Among his fellow students are Joan Prats, Josep Francesc Ràfols, Enric Cristòfol Ricart, and possibly Josep Llorens Artigas.

1913

Joins the Cercle Artístic de Sant Lluc, where he attends life classes.


1916

Meets the dealer Josep Dalmau, who shows an interest in his work.
Rents a studio with E. C. Ricart in Barcelona, which they share until 1918.

1917

Meets Maurice Raynal and Francis Picabia, probably through Josep Dalmau.
Takes an interest in poetry and reads Catalan and French avant-garde reviews such as Pierre Reverdy’s Nord-Sud and Albert Birot’s SIC.

1918

Forms part of the Agrupació Courbet together with Josep Llorens Artigas, J. F. Ràfols, E. C. Ricart, Rafael Sala, Francesc Domingo, and Marià Espinal, all students at Galí’s art school and the Cercle Artístic de Sant Lluc.
First solo exhibition at the Galeries Dalmau, Barcelona.

1920

Travels to Paris for the first time. Meets Pablo Picasso.


1921

In Paris, where he stays until 1925, he has the use of Pablo Gargallo’s studio at 45, rue Blomet. Spends most of the rest of the year at Mont-roig.
First solo exhibition in Paris, at the Galerie La Licorne. The introduction to the catalogue is written by Maurice Raynal.
Starts work on his famous painting The Farm.

1922

In Paris he lives and works at 45, rue Blomet. Becomes friendly with André Masson, his neighbour, and with Roland Tual.



1923

Through Masson he meets Michel Leiris and probably Antonin Artaud, Robert Desnos, Jean Dubuffet, Paul Éluard, Marcel Jouhandeau, Georges Limbour, Raymond Queneau, and Armand Salacrou.
At Mont-roig he begins painting Tilled Field, Catalan Landscape (The Hunter), and Pastoral, which mark a turning point in his art.

1924

Avant-garde poets and writers gather in Masson’s studio to discuss poetry. Miró’s friends during this period are Max Jacob, Michel Leiris, Georges Limbour, Benjamin Péret, Armand Salacrou, and Roland Tual.

1925

Meets André Breton, who visits the studio in rue Blomet.
First one-man show at the Galerie Pierre in Paris that year.
Starts work on the Dream Paintings.
Shows two paintings in “Exposition: La peinture surréaliste.”

1926

Moves into a new studio at 22, rue Tourlaque in the Cité des Fusains. His neighbours are Max Ernst, Hans Arp, and probably Paul Éluard and Camille Goemans.
The dealer Pierre Loeb represents him from now on in Europe.
Starts work on his famous painting The Farm.

With Max Ernst he designs the sets and costumes for the ballet Romeo and Juliet, performed by Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes.

1928

Produces the first of his object-collages, entitled Spanish Dancer.
Solo exhibition at the Galerie Georges Bernheim et Cie.
Visits Belgium and the Netherlands and paints Dutch Interiors on his return.

1929

Works on the series known as Imaginary Portraits.
Produces his first lithographs, for Tristan Tzara’s L’arbre des voyageurs.
Starts the collage-papers series at Mont-roig.
Marries Pilar Juncosa in Palma de Mallorca. They settle in Paris.

1930

One-man exhibitions at the Galerie Pierre in Paris.
Takes part in La Peinture au défi at the Galerie Goemans in Paris.
Birth of his only daughter, Maria Dolors, in Barcelona.
First one-man show in the United States, at the Valentine Gallery in New York.

1931

Produces his first object-paintings.
Solo exhibition at the Galerie Pierre in Paris.




1932

Through Joan Prats, he meets the architect Josep Lluís Sert.
Designs the curtain, sets, costumes, and objects for the ballet Jeux d’enfants performed by the Ballets Russes de Monte-Carlo.
First solo exhibition at the Pierre Matisse Gallery in New York.

1933

Works on a series of eighteen paintings based on collages.
Solo exhibitions at the Mayor Gallery in London and at the Galerie Georges Bernheim in Paris.


1934

Signs a contract with Pierre Matisse, who represents him in the United States.

1936

Outbreak of the Spanish Civil War.
Travels to Paris with his latest works—a series of paintings on Ma-sonite—which are to be exhibited in New York. Because of the war, he decides to stay in Paris and is joined by his wife and daughter.

1937

Paints Still-life with Old Shoe.
Attends life classes at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière, where he does a large number of drawings.
Produces a large mural painting, The Reaper (Catalan Peasant in Revolt), for the Spanish Republic’s pavilion, designed by Josep Lluís Sert and Luis Lacasa, at the World’s Fair in Paris. The pavilion also included Picasso’s Guernica, the Mercury Fountain by Alexander Calder, and Montserrat by Julio González.

1938

Works on etchings and dry-point engravings with Louis Marcoussis and prints these at the studios of Roger Lacourière and Stanley W. Hayter.




1939

End of the Spanish Civil War and beginning of Francisco Franco’s dictatorship.
Leaves Paris in the summer and rents a house in Varengeville-sur-Mer (Normandy).
Outbreak of the Second World War.

1940

Starts a series of twenty-three gouaches, which he continues in Palma and finishes at Mont-roig in 1941. These works are later known as the Constellations.
The Nazis bomb Normandy at the end of May, and Miró decides it is safer to return to Spain. He settles in Palma.

1941

First major retrospective exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

1942

Works exclusively on paper.
Returns to Barcelona and moves into the family home at Passatge del Crèdit 4.

1944

Produces his first ceramics with Josep Llorens Artigas. This is the start of the first period of collaboration between the two, which continues until 1947.
Publication of the set of fifty lithographs known as the Barcelona Series, under the auspices of Joan Prats.

1945

First solo exhibition at the Pierre Matisse Gallery in New York.
End of the Second World War.


1946

Produces his first bronze sculptures.

1947

First trip to the United States, where he produces a mural painting for the Terrace Plaza Hotel in Cincinnati.
During his stay in New York he frequents Stanley W. Hayter’s studio, Atelier 17, where he experiments with engraving techniques.
Takes part in “Le Surréalisme en 1947: Exposition internationale du surréalisme” at the Galerie Maeght in Paris, organised by André Breton and Marcel Duchamp.

1948

First one-man exhibition at the Galerie Maeght in Paris. Aimé Maeght becomes his new representative in France.

1949

Starts to spend more time on graphic works, doing lithography at the Mourlot printing studio and engraving at the Atelier Lacourière.

1950

Starts work on the mural painting for the dining hall at Harkness Commons, Harvard University, commissioned by Walter Gropius.

1954

Starts a new period of collaboration with Josep Llorens Artigas in Gallifa, near Barcelona.

1956

Retrospective exhibition at the Palais des Beaux-Arts in Brussels.
Exhibition of ceramics by Miró and Artigas at the Galerie Maeght in Paris and at the Pierre Matisse Gallery in New York.
Starts work on the two ceramic murals for the UNESCO headquarters in Paris.
Moves permanently to Palma, where he has had a house built and Josep Lluís Sert has designed a large studio for him.

1958

Unveiling of the two UNESCO murals, which receive the Guggenheim International Award.






1959

Retrospective exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

1961

Completes the large-format paintings Blue I, Blue II, and Blue III.
Publication of Jacques Dupin’s book on Miró.

1964

Opening of the Fondation Maeght, designed by Josep Lluís Sert, and of the Labyrinth containing sculptures by Miró and Artigas, at Saint-Paul-de-Vence.

1966

Produces his first monumental sculptures in bronze.
Visits Japan for the first time for a retrospective exhibition at the National Museum of Art in Tokyo. There he meets the poet Shuzo Takiguchi, author of the first monograph on Miró.

1967

Installation of a ceramic mural, produced in collaboration with Josep Llorens Artigas, at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York.
Awarded the Carnegie International Prize for Painting.

1968

Last visit to the United States. Awarded an honorary doctorate by Harvard University.
Retrospective exhibitions at the Fondation Maeght in Saint-Paul-de-Vence, and at the Antic Hospital de la Santa Creu in Barcelona.

1969

“Miró otro” exhibition at the Col•legi d’Arquitectes de Barcelona. Miró also paints the glass front of the building (an ephemeral action that is erased when the exhibition is over).

1970

In conjunction with Artigas, he produces a monumental ceramic mural for Barcelona Airport.

1972

Retrospective exhibition of sculptures at the Kunsthaus in Zurich.
“Joan Miró: Magnetic Fields” exhibition at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York.

1974

Retrospective exhibition at the Grand Palais in Paris.
Finishes The Hope of the Man Condemned to Death.

1975

The Fundació Joan Miró in Barcelona, designed by the architect Josep Lluís Sert, opens to the public
Death of General Franco.

1976

Produces a large tapestry in conjunction with Josep Royo for the National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., and starts work on the Tapestry of the Foundation.

1977

Produces a large tapestry in conjunction with Josep Royo for the National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., and starts work on the Tapestry of the Foundation.

1978

Retrospective exhibition at the Museo Español de Arte Contemporáneo in Madrid, organised in collaboration with the Fundació Joan Miró in Barcelona.
First performance of Mori el Merma, by the Teatre de la Claca company at the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, with puppets, masks, and sets by Miró.

1979

Unveiling of the stained-glass windows at the Fondation Maeght, produced in collaboration with Charles Marcq, with whom Miró also worked on the Chapelle Royale de Saint-Frambourg, Fondation Cziffra, Senlis.
Awarded an honorary doctorate by Barcelona University.

1980

King Juan Carlos presents him with the Gold Medal for Fine Arts.



1981

Unveiling of the monumental sculpture known as Miss Chicago in Brunswick Plaza, Chicago.

1983

Exhibitions to celebrate Miró’s ninetieth birthday include “Joan Miró: A Ninetieth-Birthday Tribute” at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and “Joan Miró: the 1920s. Mutation of Reality” at the Fundació Joan Miró in Barcelona.
Joan Miró dies in Palma on December 25. He is buried in Montjuïc Cemetrey, Barcelona.

Exhibitions and projects related to Joan Miró.

  • Current and upcoming exhibitions

    2 October 2015 – 24 January 2016
    Joan Miró Wall Frieze Mural
    Kunsthaus Zürich
    www.kunsthaus.ch

  • Past exhibitions

    13 June – 27 September, 2015
    Miró. Painting as Poetry
    Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-westfalen
    www.kunstsammlung.de

    12 September 2014 - 11 January 2015
    Miró from Earth to Sky
    Albertina Museum, Wien
    www.albertina.at

  • Curs de Postgrau d’Estudis Mironians

    www.uoc.edu

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