28 June – 31 October
The exhibit at the Fundación/Museum Granell is a mirror of the show that can be seen at the Ciudad de la Cultura, “The Encounter in Granell´s Poetic”. It reflects the friendships Granell made during his long exile. Most of the works shown were gifts ion these friends and they are part of the legacy found in the Fundación Granell.
“Surrealism Today” has been created along Granell’s biography. It begins in the Dominican Republic where he first landed on his long exile from the Spanish Civil War. In 1940 he also began his life as a painter in this island. Here he married his wife Amparo and he met André Breton, the foremost Surrealist. From this island Granell moved on to Guatemala where he lived from 1947 to the end of 1949. Here many of his friends were also artists who, thanks to him, embraced surrealism. He arrived in Puerto Rico on January 6, 1950. As a teacher of art at the University, many of his students became involved in the surrealist movement as we can see in some of the works shown. (This life span, 1940-1956, can be more fully reflected at the exhibit in the Auditorio de Galicia, “Eugenio Granell in the Centro American Paradise, 1940-1956”.)
Granell moved to New York city in 1956 and here he lived until 1985 when he returned to Madrid, Spain. In New York he was a proffesor of Spanish and Spanish Literature in Brooklyn College, he studied for his PhD in Sociology at the New School for Social Research and published his doctoral thesis, Picasso’s Guernica. The End of a Spanish Era (UMI Research Press). Several times his work was exhibited at the Bodley Gallery in New York. A gallery mostly dedicated to surrealism. He came in contact with several North American Surrealist groups and exhibited with them quite frequently. There were groups in Chicago, Ohio, New York (Hydra Group), San Francisco. His friendship with these artists can also be seen in several of the works shown here. There is also evidence of these contacts in the catalogues, books, articles and letters that are also exhibited.
While in New York he also participated in exhibits created by Phases, a Paris group. These exhibits were seen in many countries: Portugal, the former Czechoslovakia, Poland, England, Holland, the United States itself. A close friendship grows between Granell and many of the French surrealists. This collaboration had begun in 1954 when, encouraged by Marcel Duchamp and André Breton, he showed his work at A L’Etoile Scellée gallery.
Shortly after his retirement in 1985 he and his wife moved back to Madrid, Spain. Another important part of his life begins here. He is “discovered” by young Spanish intellectuals who organize several exhibits in the country’s capital as well as in A Coruña, Galicia and many other cities throughout the country. Granell publishes articles in newspapers and magazines and meets the members of several Spanish surrealist groups: Salamandra from Madrid, Kula in Gijón and the group from Zaragoza.
Granell and his wife travel frequently to Portugal where they become friendly with the foremost surrealists of that country, Artur Cruzeiro Seixas and Mário Cesariny. The friendship grows as the Portuguese artists aslo frequently travel to Spain. As we have altready mentioned, the show follows Granell’s biography in time.