Joaquín Torres García

Uruguayan painter and art theorist, born in Montevideo. Most of his life was spent in Spain, to which he moved with his family in 1891 (his mother was Uruguayan, but his father was a Spanish immigrant). He lived mainly in Barcelona, where he moved in avant-garde circles that included the young Picasso; his work there included the design of stained-glass windows (1903–7) for the church of Sagrada Familia, in collaboration with the building’s architect, Antoni Gaudí. In 1920–22 TorresGarcía lived in New York, where he was patronized by Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney and met Marcel Duchamp. From 1924 to 1932 he lived in Paris, where he developed a severely geometrical, two-dimensional Constructivist style, and in 1929 founded the review Cercle et Carré in conjunction with Michel Seuphor. In 1934 he returned to Uruguay, settling in Montevideo, where he established an art school. He wrote an autobiography, Historia de mi vida (1939), and various works on art theory, and by his example and teaching did much to promote Constructivist and Kinetic art in South America. There is a museum of his work in Montevideo.

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