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Prayer

Julio González1932

The Kröller-Müller Museum

The Kröller-Müller Museum

Metal working
The Spanish artist Julio Gonzalez learned forging, welding, cutting and other forms of metal working from his father, who was a silversmith. In 1900 he settles in Paris, where his compatriots Pablo Gargallo and Pablo Picasso inspire him to start making sculptures in iron.

Sketchy
He develops into a master of working and assembling separate pieces of scrap and old iron. His favourite subject is women; sitting, lying or dancing, combing their hair or looking in the mirror. With flat pieces and strips of iron, he sketchily suggests his figures and heads.

Drawing in space
From 1932 on, his sculptures become more sober, austere and above all more linear, as in this piece. Using flat and round bars and rods, here, with just a few expressive, ascending lines, he creates the suggestion of a kneeling and praying woman, with her arms raised up to heaven. Prayer is a prime example of how Gonzalez himself sees his sculptures: as a form of ‘drawing in space’.

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