Antonio Saura, ‘Portrait No. 3 ’, 1974, Simon Studer Art

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About Antonio Saura

An outspoken critic of Franco’s dictatorship, Spanish painter Antonio Saura is best known for his gestural, calligraphic paintings that pay homage to Spain’s cultural heritage. His paintings often employ the dark color palette of some of the country’s most celebrated painters, such as Pablo Picasso, Francisco de Goya, and Diego Velázquez, and pay tribute to their work in his choice of titles. A self-taught artist, Saura began making art at the age of seventeen, producing dreamlike landscapes in the style of Surrealism. Ten years later, in 1957, he co-founded the El Paso Group, a collective of painters, sculptors, and art critics who sought to revive Spanish art production in the wake of the Spanish Civil War and World War II. At the end of his career, Saura temporarily set aside painting to collaborate with his brother, the film director Carlos Saura, on set designs for the ballet, opera, and theater.

Spanish, 1930-1998, Huesca, Spain