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  • Provenance

    Sala Gaspar, Barcelona; Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Frank H. Porter Trust Estate

  • Exhibited

    Hanover, Kestner-Gesellschaft, Antoni Tàpies, February - April 1962; Zurich, Kunsthaus, Antoni Tàpies, April - June 1962

  • Literature

    A. Augustí, Tàpies. The Complete Works 1943-1960, vol. 1, Barcelona 1990, no. 867, p. 453 (illustrated)

  • Catalogue Essay

    Highly influenced by two immediate predecessors, his compatriot Joan Miró and the Swiss painter Paul Klee, in 1948 Antoni Tàpies founded the most important artistic movement in post-war Spain. Moving beyond his Surrealist and Dadaist roots, Tàpies developed a revolutionary style known as pintura matérica, in which he incorporated what were traditionally non-artistic materials into his paintings in a manner similar to his art informel peer, the Italian artist Alberto Burri. Fascinated by the contrasts between different materials, Tàpies covers his canvases with a thick, highly textured base incorporating matter such as clay and marble dust. To complete the composition, Tàpies adds incised and scribbled lines, various lacerations and graffiti-like marks.
    Grey between Brackets is a strong early work which incorporates one of the most important and recurrent motifs of Tàpies’ oeuvre, the cross. Carefully rendered and incised like a strange wound or ritualized mark at the centre of the composition, the cross can be read as a symbol of the terrible human suffering inflicted by General Franco’s forces during the Spanish Civil War on the people of Tàpies’ native Catalonia.


Grey between Brackets

Oil and mixed media on board mounted on canvas.
54 x 64.8 cm (21¼ x 25½ in).

Signed and dated 'Tàpies 1960' on the reverse.  

£70,000 - 90,000 ‡ ♠

Sold for £79,250

Contemporary Art Evening Sale

29 June 2010