Joan Miró, ‘La Japonaise (Japanese Woman)’, 1971, Baterbys Art Gallery

From the 1960s onward, Miro increasingly focused more of his energy on printingmaking. It provided a respite from painting and allowed him to work more communally with other printmakers. Additionally, Miro liked that the message behind his works would spread to more people through print editions than through a singular painting. Miro created this print after an inspiring trip to Japan in 1966. It features his typical whimsical and ambiguous shapes. Miro does not offer interpretation for his works of art, instead viewers get to delight in figuring out the puzzle for themselves.

From the edition of 50. Numbered in pencil, lower left in margin. Published by Broder, Printed by Mourlot, Paris on Wove paper Mourlot 829

Signature: Hand signed in pencil, lower right

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About Joan Miró

Joan Miró rejected the constraints of traditional painting, creating works “conceived with fire in the soul but executed with clinical coolness,” as he once said. Widely considered one of the leading Surrealists, though never officially part of the group, Miró pioneered a wandering linear style of Automatism—a method of “random” drawing that attempted to express the inner workings of the human psyche. Miró used color and form in a symbolic rather than literal manner, his intricate compositions combining abstract elements with recurring motifs like birds, eyes, and the moon. “I try to apply colors like words that shape poems, like notes that shape music,” he said. While he prized artistic freedom, Miró revered art history, basing a series of works on the Dutch Baroque interiors of Hendrick Sorgh and Jan Steen. In turn, Miró has inspired many artists—significantly Arshile Gorky, whose bold linear abstractions proved a foundational influence on Abstract Expressionism.

Spanish, 1893-1983, Barcelona, Spain, based in Paris and Catalonia, Spain