Art: The Last of the Forefathers

Joan Miró: 1893-1983

The death last week of Joan Miró, at 90, was a vivid reminder of the antiquity of modernism. The old surrealist, whose work was once so startling to received taste (a half-century ago, you did not give paintings titles like Two Figures Standing Before a Pile of Excrement without offending someone), received the last rites of the Roman Catholic Church; his death was attended by the priests whom surrealism, a profoundly Catholic movement, once despised. Miró was the last of the great modernist inventors, if you concede that neither Salvador Dali...

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