Antoni Tàpies Croix sur gris XCVIII [Cross on Grey XCVIII] 1959 © Foundation Antoni Tapies, Barcelona, VEGAP, Madrid and DACS, London 2023


Born 1923
Died 2012
Nationality Spanish
Birth place Barcelona
Death place Barcelona

Tàpies was born in Barcelona. A self-taught artist, his early work was influenced by Surrealism but from 1953 he began to make abstract works in mixed media. He would 'paint' with a thick paste made of glue, marble dust, plaster and paint: a mixture that produced a substance resembling cement or volcanic lava. Tàpies was interested in exploring the physicality of his materials and also wished to challenge the accepted concept of 'fine art'. He was strongly influenced by the art of the insane and by graffiti, and his work is often associated with the pessimism of the existentialist movement.