Manolo Valdés | Recent Works

16 September - 13 October 2022

The most prominent contemporary Spanish artist of his generation – he just celebrated his 80th birthday – Valdés is an accomplished painter and sculptor who started his career as a founding member of the eminent Spanish Pop Art collective, Equipo Crónica. Pursuing his artistic journey solo as of 1981, his approach distinctively focuses on a reinterpretation of the great masters, from the Renaissance to the modern period.


For over thirty years, Manolo Valdés has lived and worked in New York, where he recently completed a new series comprising approximately twenty works of art. This ensemble is the natural continuation of his aesthetic exploration, as he ceaselessly reinvents the portrait genre while revisiting art history. After a remarkable solo exhibition in 2017, Opera Gallery Paris is delighted to present his latest creations to the public.


In this new opus, sculpture is the predominant medium, further pushing the boundaries of representation. The feminine heads with refined, pared down faces whose features are more suggested than actually present, tend to lose their identity. Their undiminished charm resides in the dialog arising from the variety of headdresses adorning them – the weightlessness of the fascicles, the fluttering flight of the butterflies, the curtailed simplicity of the geometric, indeed abstract, shapes. The rectangles and half-moons, inspired by Constructivism, confer a true modernity upon these classic faces. Manolo Valdés plays with an array of materials such as wood, steel, resin, and glass, at times combining them. Pieces of a rare elegance emerge through these fragmented assemblages contributing to the creation of a new form of polychromy.