Maties Palau Ferré was born on
August 24, 1921, in Montblanc, province of
Tarragona, Spain. He was the youngest and only male of the three children
born of his parents, Domenec Palau Dalmau and Maria Ferré Sanahuja. Along
with his sisters, Natividad and Maria del Carme, he spent his childhood and teenage years in Montblanc.
Since his younger years he showed inclination, ability and special interest towards art.
During his younger years, he moved to Barcelona, where he compatibilized a job at the Instituto Nacional de Prevision with his studies of Fine Arts at the “Escola Sant Jordi” of Barcelona, while, being involved in the artistic world, matured his enrichment in his art, personality and formation, which he later completed with postgraduate education outside Spain.
Between 1951 and 1957 he made several exhibitions of his artwork in Barcelona, Madrid and London.
Between 1957 and 1961 he was awarded three different grants from the French government and moved to Paris to complement his art education. However, to great dismal of his teachers and friends from Paris, he always returned to his native land, where, using his own words, he felt himself free to create. Nevertheless, he did not live isolated from the world, most to the contrary, from Montblanc he kept his intense relationship with the artistic circles, to which he always remained in contact through his friends, colleagues and the frequent trips and visits which his anxious artistic sense dictated.
During the early 70’s he lived intensely a juridical and personal conflict related to commercialization of his artwork through art merchants. This culminated with a ruling of the Spanish Supreme Court given on May 16, 1974, sentencing him to pay a debt with a merchant by a certain number of square meters of his oil paintings. Greatly shaken by this sentence, after completely fulfilling the payment as ruled by the Court, he took the fatal decision to burn his paintings from then onwards, immediately after created, as demonstration of his disagreement and protest for what he considered to be an attack to the freedom of expression and a brutal commercial manipulation of the artist’s creative spirit, ruled by the uppermost justice instances of society. Bitterly, he decided to negate the fruits of his art to that society, which mistreated them.
Between 1974 and 1989 he didn’t make any exhibition or public showing of his artworks. He continued cremating all the paintings and drawings that his unrestrainedly creativity produced, until 1985. He painted no oils never more.
Fortunately, the insistence of teachers, friends, relatives and art critics, as well as his internal evolution caused by time, circumstances and most remarkably by his incursions in different creative techniques, some of them already known and re-taken vigorously, and some new, such as painting with coloured Chinese inks over handmade paper, finally produced in Maties a true personal catharsis, from which a new Palau Ferré came back alive, renovated in energy, creativity, technique and enthusiasm for life.
In 1989 finally presents an exhibition, after fifteen years of self-imposed silence, showing his “new” artwork, particularly his beautiful Chinese inks. Since then he kept creating overwhelmingly and presenting his art at numerous exhibitions in Spain and U.S.A., even though never again in commercial galleries.
On January 1st, 2000, while in his paramount of his creative genius, dies at home in his house in Montblanc.
The Municipal Council designates him as Preeminent Son of Montblanc, and the citizens organize as posthumous homage a heartfelt exhibition made of paintings of Maties owned at home by people of Montblanc.
Maties Palau Ferré’s remains rest where he always wanted them to, at the cemetery of his beloved village of Montblanc.