Artist biography

Manolo Millares 1926-1972

Spanish abstract painter born in Las Palmas in the Canary Islands. Self-taught as an artist. Began to paint watercolours of landscapes and had several one-man exhibitions in the Canary Islands. Influenced by Surrealism from 1948, started in 1949 to make fantastic pictograms influenced by Klee and Miró. Co-founder of the magazine Planas de Poesia 1949 and directed the series of art monographs Argueros. First visited Spain in 1953 to attend the International Congress of Abstract Art at Santander. Made his first collages in 1954 out of sackcloth, ceramics, wood, sand, etc. Moved to Madrid in 1955. By 1956 was making collage paintings akin to Burri's, incorporating sackcloth and with holes and burns. Co-founder with Saura, Feito and Canogar of the avant-garde group El Paso (The Step) in Madrid 1957. Began in 1957-8 to work with torn sackcloth, stitching over the voids and creating bunched and bandage-like swathes, painted or spattered. Died in Madrid.

Published in:
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, p.515