PAINTINGS

     
                
  "In Maties Palau Ferré's artwork there are three basic elements which come from the Spanish, European and universal tradition. 

Related to the Spanish tradition, Maties starts from the synthetic cubism. The synthetic cubism ends exactly in 1921 as a movement, although Picasso made some synthetic cubist paintings during the next five years beyond that. All painters starting from the synthetic cubism can't come back to do what it has been already done by their precursors, but have to do it in a new, original way, and in the paintings you can see here, the essence of the volumetric organization of the synthetic cubism is present and alive. Its spirit is there and is mixed with other elements. 

The second historical characteristic in Maties' painting is what it has of insertion into the Catalonian fauvism, because it must not be forgotten that, if Catalonia has expressed its own soul in XXth century painting, it has been through a fauvism, which is a French word, but the Catalonian fauvism, although it has the living colour of the French fauvism, is completely different in that its colours are much more "tuned", like a Catalan personality, which makes them less violent. This is a constant in the Catalonian painting of our century, that can be found equally in Sunyer as well as in this genius of the painters of our century, almost as grand as Vazquez Diaz, who was Jaume Mercadé, almost unknown outside Catalonia, and who you (Maties) loved so much. 

The third characteristic is universal. It is the winged graphism of oriental origin, which we Europeans rarely have been able to interpret, the one found in the best painting from China, Korea, Japan, Tibet and Nepal. This, which is a different way to organize the space, flat-like rather than tridimensional, and with multiple perspectives. Few European painters understood its essence and Maties Palau Ferré, who likes using Chinese inks, is one of these few. 
Indeed, also Matisse, and some other, sometimes even Sunyer, but in a different way. Because the fundamental in an artist is not his sources, but how he uses them and how he synthesizes them to reveal his own soul. Thus, from two artists coming from the same sources, you get artwork absolutely different. Also Matisse and Maties -two "Mat", aren't they-believe in life, believe that in our world there's not just dirt, but also beauty, also happiness to be alive, and that men, even though is a dying creature who can fall into the utmost abjection, can also reach the excellence, and since (Maties) believe in this, he builds with these elements and a total technical perfection, in his synthesis, a painting at the service of creation, never a de-mystifying painting at the service of destruction". 

Carlos Areán
First Prize, International Research in Art History, Buenos Aires, 1980.
Contemporary Art Museum Director, 1974-78.
Excerpt of speech at the homage paid to Palau Ferré in Madrid, February 1984.
 
 
 
Technic:         Chinese ink
Dimensions:   150 x 98 cm
Title:              Interior space

 
     
 

“His colours and forms depict the Mediterranean touch of places, persons and things. His art is like a lyric on a canvas, or as in this case, on paper. Don Maties Palau Ferré has created his own original style and school that distinguishes him, and places him on a pedestal of unique inspiration, beauty and sensitivity”.

Prof. Alfred E. Tonolo

Bloomsburg University, Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania, USA.

Excerpt of speech at the Opening Ceremony of the exhibition of Palau Ferré’s works at the Mechanicsburg Art Center, Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, USA, March 1993.

 
 
   
Technic:              Oil on canvas
Dimensions:        162 x 129 cm.
Title:                   Guer-Blanc
 
     
   “His technical ability allows Palau Ferré to draw with a single stroke the Chinese ink figures without lifting his pencil from the paper. Skill ? Yes, no doubt, but rather precision in the concept that motivated the creation and the feeling of it in relation to the colours which will depict it; colours which, because of their intensity, place his artwork within the fauvism, and most possibly so, if we understand the fauvism as the expression of pure feelings, virginal emotions, willing to escape from any contamination”.

Josep M. Cadena
Art Magazine writer.
Excerpt from the Preface to the catalog of Palau Ferré’s exhibition at Can Sisteré , Santa Coloma de Gramenet, Barcelona, Spain, May-June 1992.
 
     
   
Technic:            chinese ink
Dimensions:      72 x 100 cm.
Title:                  Young lady with red tulip
 
     
   

THEMES/   MOTIFS

Maties Palau Ferré liked to repeat themes or motifs which had a special interest or meaning for him.

“The watermelon is fire which quenches the fire of heat and thirst. The sunflower is a plant which sleeps at night. It wakes up at dawn and follows the sun without moving from its own place in the ground. It’s an sterile relation and a dream of a new awakening”.

“The pigeons are birds which can not live in a cage”.

“The association of the Woman and the Minotaur ? : When the Woman wants the monster, she is capable of anything, even capable of burning her own purity. You can see it in the Night of Saint John. The Phoenix rebuilds itself from its own ashes”.

Fragments from the booklet “Conversacions a Montblanc amb Palau Ferré” by Miquel Pons, Felanitx, Majorca, Spain, 1977.

Amongst his favorite motifs are:

Montblanc landscapes.

The figure of the Woman seen as foundations of Humankind.

Archetypical figures such as Pierrot, the gypsy woman…

Mythological elements such as the Minotaur, the Unicorn…

Nature’s elements.

Still Lives.

Expression of collective feelings, such as the Sardana dance, Myth of Saint James…

Expression of a symbolic trait (Guer-Blanc).

Currently, at the Museo de Arte Palau Ferré, in Montblanc, Tarragona, Spain, there is a select sample of his paintings to help appreciate in its variety of styles and techniques the process of evolution of the artist.

Thus, from his young years there are several pencil drawings; from his Paris years, a collection of  monotypes are in display; from his years of return and settling in Montblanc, and the following years, there are several oil on canvas paintings, and from his production after his personal catharsis, numerous Chinese ink on paper paintings and some lithographs with figures painted in a single stroke.

 
     
   
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