PRINT March 1993


SAVE FOR ANTONI TAPÍES and the odd group show or pavilion exhibit, Spanish art was all but invisible outside Spain during the long period between Generalissimo Franco’s ascent, in 1939, and his death a decade and a half ago. Even the late works of Joan Miró and Salvador Dalí, who were living in Spain undisturbed by the authorities, have largely been ignored. Furthermore, because of its peninsular situation, sealed off along its lone border by the Pyrenees, Spain has always tended to be a case apart from the rest of Western Europe. While the leading figures of 20th-century Spanish art form a distinguished cast, it is a small one, and even the great Spanish early Moderns—Picasso, Juan Gris, as well as Miró and Dalí—are as often associated with the development of modern painting in France.

The very moment Franco’s regime fell apart, Spanish art seemed suddenly to command international attention.

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