Fundació Miró

The Printmaking Studios

Miró published his first engravings in 1933, and then proceeded to learn a variety of techniques from renowned printmakers such as Louis Marcoussis, Roger Lacourrière, and William Hayter. From 1938 on, Miró’s interest in printmaking increased, as is apparent from his statement published by the French magazine XXe siècle: “I would like to try sculpture, ceramics, engraving, and have a press.”(1) In 1959, when Miró purchased Son Boter, again he expressed his intention of using the new space “to set up lithograph and etching presses.”(2) Finally, in May, 1962, Miró wrote to Dupin about his plans to set up a printmaking studio in Palma.

Miró turned the former Son Boter garage into a two-storey print workshop, with a press and other necessary equipment. The lithography studio was built over a former rainwater cistern. The lithographic press appears to have been set up in the fall of 1975. This last studio still houses an antique lithographic press that was a gift from Aimé Maeght, Miró’s art dealer in Europe, who found it in Paris.

During the last six years of his life, Miró’s main focus was on drawing, engraving, and lithography rather than painting. These studios enabled him to produce many of the editions from his mature period, in collaboration with a variety of printmakers such as Robert Dutrou, Joan Barbarà or the lithographer Damià Caus. These are the studios where series such as Enrajolats, Gaudí and Els gossos originated, prepared by Miró in collaboration with Joan Barbarà, or the lithography series Joan Miró. Pintura, in collaboration with Damià Caus. The creative process behind these series is amply represented in the works held in the Fundació’s permanent collection.

Miró’s printmaking workshops were originally used for engraving, lithography, and offset. Today, the graphic arts studios at the Fundació Pilar i Joan Miró a Mallorca still house the equipment and the tools used by the artist to produce his print work, such as the engraving press and the lithographic press. In addition to the lithography and engraving studios, additional media such as silkscreen and ceramics have since been included. In recent years, the print studios have also opened up to state-of-the-art technology, introducing digital printing and photography facilities. This renewal of the Miró studios has made it possible to schedule courses and print runs using the latest graphic arts methods available. The studios have become a privileged environment for exchanging creative ideas and experiences among artists of all ages, training, nationalities, and backgrounds.

(1). “Je rêve d’un grand atelier,” in XXe siècle, issue no. 2, Paris, May 1938, pp. 25-28.
(2). Letter from Joan Miró to Josep Lluís Sert, October 9th, 1959 (Frances Loeb Library, Graduate School of Design, Harvard University).