Joaquín Torres-García: The Arcadian Modern

*Formas libres (Free forms)*

Joaquín Torres-García. Formas libres (Free forms). 1943

Joaquín Torres-García. Formas libres (Free forms). 1943. Tempera on cardboard, 19 11/16 × 22 13/16″ (50 × 58 cm). Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection. © Sucesión Joaquín Torres-García, Montevideo 2015

Narrator: Free Forms presents many of the geometric symbols that occur throughout Torres-García’s work, like the figure of a man, a lock, a key, a clock, a fish, and a ship.

Karen Grimson: The freedom that’s conveyed in the title of the work indicates the release of these figures from their orthogonal prisons. Not only are they not trapped in an orthogonal composition, but they also aren’t trapped in a space that is built by perspective in order to simulate the illusion that we have of space surrounding us. What this does is create a work that begins and ends in itself or on its own, so that it refers to nothing outside of it.

The artist has stripped away any reference to space and of any color other than a gray background.

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