DATE & TIME
Thursday 9th June 2016
11:00 am to 12:00 pm
Manolo Valdés is one of few artists today who has successfully mastered the disciplines of drawing, painting, sculpture and printmaking. In each medium he shows himself to be technically skilled, highly original and unceasingly provocative. Born in Valencia, Spain in 1942, he began his training as a painter at the age of 15 when he entered the Fine Arts Academy of San Carlos, Valencia.
In 1964 Valdés, Rafael Solbes and Joan Toledo collaborated to form Equipo Crónica, an artistic team that utilized Pop Art to question the Spanish dictatorship of Francisco Franco and the history of art itself. After the group dissolved in 1981, Valdés reinvented himself.
He draws heavily upon Spanish artistic heritage, particularly the work of Velázquez and the informalismo of his immediate predecessors Manolo Millares, Antonio Saura and Antoni Tàpies. Using etching, silkscreen and collage techniques, the prints of Manolo Valdés reference these and other masters, including Rembrandt, Rubens and Matisse, creating an intellectual twist that brings significant historical works out of their original context. Today Valdés lives and works in New York and Madrid.
The works of Manolo Valdés can be seen in numerous public and private collections including: Fonds National d’Arts Plastiques, Paris, France; Fundación Caja de Pensiones, Barcelona, Spain; Fundación del Museo Guggenheim Bilbao, Bilbao, Spain; Instituto Valenciano de Arte Moderno, Centre Julio Gonzalez, Valencia, Spain; Kunsthalle, Kiel, Germany; Kunstmuseum, Berlin, Germany; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York; Musée National d’Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France; Museo de Arte Contemporáneo Internacional Rufino Tamayo, Mexico City, Mexico; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, Spain; Museum of Modern Art, New York, New York; Veranneman Foundation, Kruishoutem, Belgium.
Marlborough Gallery, 6 Albemarle Street, London W1S 4BY
Marlborough Fine Art was founded in 1946 by Frank Lloyd and Harry Fischer who had emigrated from Vienna to England shortly after the outbreak of war. In Vienna, Lloyd’s family had been art and antique dealers for three generations and Fischer had dealt in antiquarian books. They were joined in 1947 by David Somerset, later Duke of Beaufort, and now chairman of Marlborough Fine Art (London) Ltd.
Their early exhibitions were widely reviewed and by 1952 Marlborough was selling masterpieces of late 19th century including bronzes by Edgar Degas and paintings by Mary Cassatt, Paul Signac, Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro, Alfred Sisley, Auguste Renoir, and drawings by Constantin Guys and Vincent van Gogh.
In the late 1950s and early 1960s, Marlborough put on a string of prime exhibitions related to expressionism and the modern German tradition: « Art in Revolt, Germany 1905–1925 », « Kandinsky, the Road to Abstraction » and « The Painters of the Bauhaus ». These were followed by a major Kurt Schwitters show in 1963. In the 1960s Marlborough staged exhibitions by Francis Bacon, Henry Moore, Jackson Pollock and Egon Schiele.
In the 1960s, Frank Lloyd moved to New York and in 1972 his son Gilbert Lloyd assumed control of Marlborough Fine Art in London. At this time Pierre Levai, Frank Lloyd’s nephew, took over the running of Marlborough in New York. During the 1970s and 1980s, Marlborough staged exhibitions by Frank Auerbach, Lynn Chadwick, Lucian Freud, Barbara Hepworth, R.B. Kitaj, Ben Nicholson, Victor Pasmore, John Piper, Graham Sutherland, Jacques Lipchitz, René Magritte, Max Beckmann, Max Bill, and Henri Matisse. The gallery organized the « Schwitters in Exile » exhibition of 1981 which renewed interest in the late work of this artist.
During the 1980s and 1990s, exhibitions of work by Stephen Conroy, John Davies, Bill Jacklin, Ken Kiff, and Paula Rego were held. In 1994–95, R.B. Kitaj had a major retrospective exhibition at the Tate Gallery, London, travelling to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Metropolitan Museum, New York. In 2001, Paula Rego showed at Abbot Hall Art Gallery & Museum in Kendal, northern England, which travelled to the Yale Center for British Art in the USA. Another retrospective exhibition of Paula Rego’s work, curated by Marco Livingstone, was shown at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, in 2007. The exhibition then travelled to the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, D.C., in 2008. In 2005, London held an exhibition of prints by the 90-year-old Louise Bourgeois. Lucian Freud’s etchings was followed by an exhibition by the American artist Dale Chihuly.
During the 1990s, Marlborough took another new step in becoming one of the first galleries in the Western world to exhibit contemporary art from China. In 1953 Marlborough had already staged a small exhibition of two Chinese painters in London and during the 1960s Marlborough exhibited the abstract paintings of the Taiwanese artist Lin Sho-Yu (who worked in London under the name of Richard Lin). The gallery’s relationship with Chinese art took on a different dimension with the exhibition, « New Art from China: Post 1979 », which opened at the London gallery in 1994.
In 2012, Marlborough Fine Art opened a new gallery for contemporary art on the first floor of its Albemarle Street premises, appointing Andrew Renton, Professor of Curating at Goldsmith’s College, University of London, as its director.