Cy Twombly

Born in 1928 - United States


Edwin Parker Twombly Jr aka Cy Twombly, is an internationally famous American artist born on 25th April, 1928 in Lexington, Virginia, and passed away on July 5th, 2011 in Rome. A painter, draftsman, sculptor and American photographer, he was awarded the Golden Lion at the Venice Biennial in 2001. He studied at Black Mountain College in North Carolina, and then traveled to Europe and North Africa, before settling down in Italy.

He belongs to the generation formed by Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns and Brice Marden, renewing American art after the generation of abstract expressionists such as Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko and Barnett Newman.

Cy Twombly developed his work between abstraction and figuration, and didn't give one more attention than the other. The diversity and scope of his work are an obvious paradox, but also a rich and intellectual artistic research.

One can perceive several time periods in Cy Twombly's work. Late 1950's stand out through graffiti and scratches on sheets of paper, along with letters, words and numbers. The drawings of the 1960s are highlighted by the intensive use of colored pencils as well as pastel but also graffiti and numbers. During the 1970s, collage caught the upper hand on his series which depicted the same pattern, before the artist moved onto large formats and these were devoted to Greek-Latin mythology.

His mediums like painting, pencil and pastel increased in the early 1990's and reached its peak with a series of drawings in 2001. Through these works, the artist was able to break the traditional barriers between painting and drawing, which make up unprecedented art.

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1951 : Première exposition personnelle, au Milwaukee Art Center,
1951 : Première exposition new-yorkaise, Kootz Gallery,
1953 : Première exposition à la Stable Gallery, New York,
1964 : Exposition du cycle Nine Discourses on Commodus à la galerie Castelli, New York,
1979 : Rétrospective au Whitney Museum of American Art, New York,
1987 : Rétrospective organisée par Harald Szeemann à la Kunsthaus de Zurich,
1988 : Itinérance de l'exposition de 1987 au Centre national d'art et de culture Georges-Pompidou (ISBN 2-85850-438-5),
1989 : Rétrospective de l’œuvre peinte à la Menil Collection, Houston,
1994 : Rétrospective au MoMA New York, avec itinérance à Houston, Los Angeles et Berlin,
2004 : L'exposition "Fifty years of works on paper", d'abord présentée à L'Ermitage de Saint-Petersbourg en 2003, vient au Centre national d'art et de culture Georges-Pompidou,
2007 : Exposition de la série Blooming à la Collection Lambert en Avignon,
2008 : "Cy Twombly, Cycles and Seasons", Tate Modern, London, avec itinérance à Bilbao et Rome,
2016 : Cy Twombly, Centre Pompidou (30.11. 2016 - 24.04.2017).

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