Javier Díaz-GuardiolaSEGUIRMadrid Updated: Save Send news by mail electrónicoTu name *

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“there Was a moment –I had John Genovese a few months ago in which very probably would be one of his last interviews– in which the world that was in front of the eye made me small by looking at it from the front. Throughout the History, all the painters painted what they had before the eyes. But that has a problem –continued–: What is behind it, I now don’t see it. Why nobody thought to catch their gaze and to situate it, a bird’s eye view?”.

we Assume that it had to be this morning in his study. There, suddenly, the “multitudes” of his paintings, those that were born of reversing the gaze, the same set up as the mark of identity of its author , stood in the dry, it ceased running before the announcement that its creator had died early that morning fifteen days of 90 years.

A Sorolla in the family

Genovés was born in Valencia in 1930, and there he studied Fine Arts. Their parents made them grace that “having a Sorolla in the family”. The boy, with the time, I would be less contemplative and more combative : he participated in collective significant in the pictorial group of the Spanish post-war as The Seven (1949), the Grupo Parpalló (1956) and Hondo (1960), which in the seventies led to greater links with the opposition movements to the franco regime , and gave rise to two themes characteristic of his work: the individual in solitude and crowds.

Genovese devoted his life and his work to speak of freedom, sometimes at the cost of his own

This turn estílístico, a result of a crisis, it will appear loaded with a political realism of strong social protest. however, his words are deduced not have as clear this tag: “defines the work as a politician with a lot of speed, and not only mine. In the background, my painting springs from a need. I was born in 1930, so the war passed through my childhood. The facts that I lived in that time period, I became as a hack in the brain”. Your way of destilarlos it was through his art: “Each painting that I painted was a way to take off a weight top”, he confessed.

Detail of “The embrace”, the iconic work by the artist

The spaniard was an artist, “resilient”, as we would say now ; a “rugged”. In front of the political future and the thrust of abstract Expressionism. And a “painter” needs: “I’ve Just made the case to myself,” he said. That’s why, so was titled one of the latest monographs that will be the dedicated (“Resistance”, The Factory, 2019), which came in a sweet moment, shortly after filing in the Niemeyer Center of Avilés and wide-ranging “The unit divided by zero” : your work alongside that of his three sons (all artists: Paul, Ana and Silvia, the same that today I wrote as a tribute to his father:

“he Died dreaming of images until the last moment” ). Similarly, his work came to Moscow and he remained holed up in the studio –where you always liked sessions marathon, until the next-to-last fright to the health to have him down the rhythms in the boxes that now abandons, and that would make a next individual in the Marlborough, your gallery decades ago.

A symbol of the Transition

In that same workshop, one in which yesterday morning everything will be silence, it gave rise to one of the symbols of the Transition, the painting “The embrace”, an ode to the reunion and the possibilities of politics to build a better society. Claimed Genoese that their desire was to convey enthusiasm for the policy, and that’s why his model was a group of children at the exit of the school , although there are those who saw in him the impetus of the football fans, aware as they were that its author was always an enthusiast of Valencia.

“Every frame a painting was a way to take a load off,” confessed

in times In which you refuse us the embraces and enforces the social distance, that box is a legend and hidden legend. Sold to a collector overseas, he returned to Spain to swell from its depots for the collection of the Reina Sofía Museum: “he was Born in the underground, and is hidden clandestinely –narrated Genoese to a japanese journalist, who did not give credit –. I explained to her I that in this country things happen very rare”. The painter wasted no opportunity to lay claim to as a natural space for him in the Congress of Deputies . And I got it, although for this purpose the Constitution had to be 40 years old. Only then the work passed to occupy a room-presidential floor. The force of the symbol is highlighted when the Pedro Sánchez and Albert Rivera tried to sign a pact endowment failed in 2016, with the canvas as a backdrop.

“Ceremony”, a canvas of 2015 of a painter

John Genovese devoted his life and his work to speak of freedom, sometimes at the cost of his own. He was above nationalisms, convinced iberista as it was . He painted until the last moment, something that inspired the young artists, of which he was always attentive: “you have to invest the time on the job.

If you are able to resist a whole day, two , painting it, then yeah you’re a painter”. He believed in the transformative power of art. His work earned him, among other awards, the honorable mention of the Venice Biennale of 1966 , the National Prize of Plastic Arts in 1984, or the Gold Medal in the Fine Arts, granted by the Ministry of Culture, in 2005.

In dark times such as these, in which we strive to highlight what separates us in the face of what unites us (“The day that the Spanish let’s talk about ourselves in terms of good and bad , “The hug” to be completed”), a loss like yours is irreparable damage. And leaves us immobile, in silence. Like the protagonists of the crowds of his paintings.