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Person in the Presence of Nature

Joan Miró, Spanish, 1893 - 1983
During the first several months of 1935, Joan Miró created a group of paintings on cardboard that he later described as a summary, or self-assessment, of his own career up to that point. Person in the Presence of Nature is part of that series. The artist’s macabre treatment of the Spanish landscape in this work might relate to the nation’s mounting political turbulence, which would culminate in civil war (1936–39) and the rise to power of Fascist dictator Francisco Franco....

Object Details
With Pierre Matisse Gallery, New York, purchased June 1, 1935; sold to Howard Putzel, Stanley Rose Gallery, Los Angeles, December 21, 1935 [1]; sold to Louise and Walter C. Arensberg, Los Angeles, December 24, 1935 [2]; gift to PMA, 1950.1. Matisse Gallery stockbook 1931-1942, stock no. 362 (Pierre Matisse Gallery Archives, The Morgan Library, NY, Box 171, file 34). Presumably purchased from Miró, with whom Matisse had an exclusive North American contract as of 1934. Putzel was director of the Stanley Rose Gallery from late 1935 to 1936.2. Letter from Pierre Matisse to Walter Arensberg, September 25, 1951 in curatorial file (original in Arensberg Archives), recording the date of purchase from Putzel.

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