María Moreno en los lugares que le inspiraron
She died on 17 February 2020 in Madrid at age 86.
María Moreno (Madrid,1933-2020)
From a young age, she felt a strong sense of vocation for the arts and a passion for literature, which provided her with a rich inner world.
She trained at the School of Fine Arts of San Fernando in Madrid, which she entered in 1954 to study Fine Arts, specializing in painting. This period marked her for life, not only professionally but also personally. There she met her friends and fellow artists Antonio López García, Isabel Quintanilla, Amalia Avia, Julio and Francisco Hernandez López and Lucio Muñoz (who soon shifted from figuration to abstraction, although he never abandoned the bond with the group). The work of these artists has been labelled with different names: Madrilenian realism, Madrilenian figuration, hyperrealism, or School of Madrid, among others.
Precisely one of her colleagues, Antonio López, became his life and creative partner. Although both have been interested in the same motifs, which they have approached from their fondness for reality, each of them has developed their work individually, thus acquiring their own style and vision.
Since the seventies of the last century, the work of María Moreno began to be exhibited and became part of several international collections. The exhibitions held since in Germany and the UK dedicated to the group of artists who devoted themselves to the New Figuration in Madrid at the time had a great impact.
Her solo exhibitions have been less numerous, but have had a major impact on the knowledge of her work by national and international collectors. In 1973 she exhibited at the gallery of Ernst Wuthenow in Frankfurt, who also organized several relevant shows dedicated to the Spanish realism practiced by María and some of her colleagues. In 1990, the Parisian gallery owner Claude Bernard convinced the painter to exhibit in his gallery despite her reservations; this exhibition garnered rave reviews from audiences and critics.
In recent years, her work has been part of several group shows, being especially significant the one held in 1991 at the Royal Academy of Madrid, Otra realidad. Compañeros en Madrid (Another Reality. Partners in Madrid), as well as the recent Realistas de Madrid (Realists of Madrid) held at the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum (February-May 2016). The first was key in the understanding of the Madrilenian figuration that emerged in the fifties within the context of the art that was done by other contemporaries and colleagues; while the latter has offered the opportunity to put the work of these artists into perspective after having developed lengthy careers.
The subjects of her works, which are always intimately linked to her, encompass landscapes, in which Madrid has a prominent place, but also of La Mancha; portraits of people from her environment from her first years; interiors, which have been present since the beginning of her career; a few still lifes; gardens and many flowers, for which she developed a special predilection from the nineties.
In addition to numerous private collections, her work is held by the following public collections: Fundació Sorigué, Lérida; Artium, Vitoria; Museum of Contemporary Art of Toledo; Iberdrola Collection, Bilbao; Kupferstichkabinett, Kunsthalle, Hamburg.
She died on February 17, 2020 in Madrid at age 86