The Musée d’Art Moderne de Paris (MAM) and the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao are set to present “From Fauvism to Surrealism: Masterpieces from the Musée d’Art Moderne de Paris,” an exhibition sponsored by the BBVA Foundation. It will comprise a selection of nearly 70 pieces by significant artists that illustrates the history of the MAM collection while offering an overview of the avant-garde artistic movements that flourished in Paris during the first decades of the 20th century.
The MAM was built during the Exposition Internationale (1937) as a home to the collections of modern and contemporary art of the city of Paris. It then expanded following major acquisitions of works by important artists of the Parisian art scene and became a formal museum in 1961. Patrons were an integral source of support for this project, especially Dr. Maurice Girardin, whose museum bequest of 1953 became the nucleus for the collection of modern masters, including the Fauves, Cubists, representatives of the School of Paris and French Masters.
Organized chronologically over three sections, from the beginning of the 20th century to the period following World War II, the selection of works in this exhibition presents an historical perspective of the main protagonists involved in these pivotal artistic movements. The exhibition begins with representative works of Fauvism and Cubism, whose “audacious” freedom revolutionized art and changed traditional perception of landscape, human figure and still life. This is followed by the generation of international artists who gave birth to the School of Paris during the interwar period, alongside several well-known French artists at the time. Finally, there is a presentation of artists involved with Surrealism, which was led by the poet André Breton since its founding in 1924 in its historical home of Paris.
Through the present day, MAM continues its approach to the collection through its scientific and cultural policy of gathering exemplary representations of historical avant-garde movements. Many of these works are presented in Bilbao for the first time in this exhibition.
The exhibition will be available from February 11 to May 22, 2022.