Skip to main content
Miró, UBU, 1950

Joan Miró
, 1950

gouache on cardboard, 35 × 24 cm

A great surrealist, Miró could not help but feel attracted to Alfred Jarry's character, Ubu Roi, protagonist of two famous theatrical texts and quintessence of the "against" culture. King Ubu is the comic-grotesque description of power, and the buffoonery of the characters and events does not detract from the subversive charge, the denunciation engineered by the author. Miró, always an opera painter, dedicated a group of works on paper like the one in the collection to this character and then, in the 1960s, a series of graphics. In all of them, the story-telling and magical tone of his universe becomes harsh, bordering on the grotesque, which, as in the playwright, conveys a meditation on the absurdity of authoritarianism, embodied in those years, in the eyes of the Catalan Miró, by Generalissimo Franco. Starting from the figure of Ubu, Miró will also write a satirical drama entitled Mori el Merma, which in Catalan means "Let the Tyrant die".

from: Fondazione Arnaldo Pomodoro. La Collezione permanente, exhibition catalogue, edited by G. Verzotti, A. Vettese, Milano, Skira, 2007, p. 177.