WIFREDO ARCAY Cuban, 1925-1997
'The perfection of Cuba’s Cubists'
- Jean Arp
Arcay (b. 1925 Havana, Cuba - d. 1997 Paris, France) emerged among the postwar generation of the Ecole de Paris as a painter, muralist and as a printmaker. Born in Cuba and trained at Havana’s Academia de San Alejandro, Arcay arrived in Paris on a grant in 1949. He quickly assimilated within the milieu of post-Cubist abstraction, studying with Edgard Pillet and Jean Dewasne at their Atelier d’art abstrait. In 1951, at the invitation of André Bloc, the influential editor of the journal Art d’Aujourd’hui, Arcay set up a studio at Bloc’s villa in Meudon, mingling amongst such luminaries of the historical avant-garde as Jean Arp, Robert and Sonia Delaunay, and Fernand Léger.
While celebrated as a printmaker, Arcay painted only through the 1950s and 1960s, sending work to the Salon des Réalités Nouvelles (1951-54) and regularly to Cuba. He exhibited as part of the Cuban delegation to the São Paolo Biennale (1955) and frequently at Havana’s Galería Color-Luz, a pioneering outpost of geometric abstraction. A member of both the Constructivist Groupe Espace, founded by Bloc and Félix Del Marle in 1951, and the short-lived Cuban group Los Diez Pintores Concretos (1959-61), Arcay personified the rich diversity and internationalism of postwar abstraction.
The artist was recently included in the 2019 Reina Sofia exhibition in Madrid, Loved, Lost and Loose in Paris: Foreign Artists in Paris 1944-1968.
WIFREDO ARCAYUntitled, c1950Gouache, pencil and ink on paper15 x 43 cm
5 7/8 x 16 7/8 inches
WIFREDO ARCAYUntitled, c1950Gouache and ink on paper12 x 45 cm
4 3/4 x 17 3/4 inches
WIFREDO ARCAYUntitled, c.1950Gouache on paper12.5 x 18 cm
4 7/8 x 7 1/8 inches
WIFREDO ARCAYUntitled, c.1950Gouache and ink on paper16 x 23 cm
6 1/4 x 9 inches
WIFREDO ARCAYUntitled, c.1950Gouache on paper16.5 x 25 cm
6 1/2 x 9 7/8 inches
WIFREDO ARCAYUntitled, 1957Oil on wooden relief56.5 x 96.5 x 2.5 cm
22 1/4 x 38 x 1 inches
WIFREDO ARCAYHorst-Egon Kalinowski, 1951Gouache on paper25 x 35.5 cm
9 7/8 x 14 inches
THREE COLOURS12 Apr - 5 Jun 2021We are excited that The Mayor Gallery will be re-open to the public from the 12 April with our comprehensive exhibition Three Colours, Red-White-Blue. A wide range of artists will...
HOPE FOR BLUER SKIESABSTRACT EXHIBITION 5 Mar - 9 Apr 2021The Mayor Gallery wishes you a year of happiness and good health with three online Abstract exhibitions to come in the first three months of 2021. 'WHITE AS SNOW IN...
RED CELEBRATING CHINESE NEW YEARABSTRACT EXHIBITION 5 Feb - 4 Mar 2021The Mayor Gallery wishes you a year of happiness and good health with three online Abstract exhibitions to come in the first three months of 2021. 'White as Snow in...
LATIN AMERICAN WORKS ON PAPER9 Jan - 28 Feb 2018The Mayor Gallery presents a group show of seven Latin American artists who were either born there or moved to join in the exciting and revolutionary art movements happening in...
WIFREDO ARCAYCUBAN STRUCTURES 12 Oct - 20 Nov 2015Acclaimed by Jean Arp as “the perfection of Cuba’s Cubists,” Wifredo Arcay (b.1925 Havana, Cuba - d.1997 Paris, France) emerged among the postwar generation of the Ecole de Paris as...