Joaquin Torres Garcia

Born in Montevideo, Uruguay, 1874, Considered the father of Latin American Constructivism, moved to Spain in 1891 and in 1892 to Barcelona, where he attended the Academia de bellas artes before enrolling Academia Baixas, frequenting the avant-garde artist café Els Quatre Gats, along with fellow student Pablo Picasso. He met Antoni Gaudí, with whom he collaborated, from about 1903 to 1907, on the Templo expiatorio de la Sagrada Familia and the stained glass windows of the cathedral of Palma de Mallorca. Traveled and lived in the US (NYC)and Italy from 1920 through 1925, settling in Paris in 1926, after a rejection from the 1928 Salon d'automne, began to experiment with Constructivism, creating his first truly Constructivist works in 1929. In 1929, Torres-García met Piet Mondrian, and along with Michel Seuphor the three later founded the movement Cercle et Carré (Circle and Square). The group was to provide an artistic alternative to the dominant Parisian movement of Surrealism, Returned to Uruguay in April 1934. There he founded the Asociación de arte constructivo (Association of Constructivist Artists) and published the journal Circulo y cuadrado, which introduced the avant-garde art movements of Cubism, Neoplasticism, and Constructivism to artists in his home country. He published extensively on the theory of art, and partly due to his 1935 call for artists to invert the traditional hierarchy of art by placing Latin America before Europe.