Miró developed his Black and Red Series in the midst of the Spanish Civil War. He conceived the compositions as variants on a crowded scene in which three figures—sometimes interpreted as a mother, a daughter, and a father (a group that corresponds to Miró’s own family)—face a monstrous, long-nosed head that might symbolize General Francisco Franco, who would go on to rule as dictator for several decades. To create the prints, the artist worked with two etched copper plates, alternately inking them in red and black. He superimposed them in different combinations and positions that suggest varying degrees of tumult within an overall narrative of oppression and fear.
Gallery label from 2021