Joan CAPELLA


Joan Capella Arenas was born in Montcada i Reixac in 1927, where he lived until his passing, in 2005. He was the youngest of three brothers. During the Spanish civil war, when he was 9 years old, he lost his father. This, naturally, marked his life and that of his family for as long as he lived.

He went to school at the La Salle Montcada School until he came to Barcelona to initiate his baccalaureate studies. Painting was his main hobby ever since he was a boy. From his brother Joseph he inherited the first painting box he used for many years.

During the 40s he started his artistic studies in the Llotja, in Barcelona. His first trip to Paris, as well as his later stages in that city, had a definitive influence in the profile of his pictorial language, which is closer to the synthetic cubism of Juan Gris than to Picasso's analytic style, although we can also find in him the exquisite lyric figurative language of Braque's still lives and, mostly, even closer to some of the most relevant representatives of the so called Paris Spanish School. Such as Bores, Peinado and Viñes, whom he was in close contact with.

In 1945, the so called Tertulia group spontaneously appears, formed by a heterogeneous group of people whose only common trait was their interest in art. They regularly gathered to chat in the Cactus bar, in Montcada. It was here that, at a later stage, the magazine bearing the same name, which lasted for twelve years, was born. In that group he coincided with artists like the poet Pere Llorens, Xavier Fàbregas, Jaume Trias, Moisés Vilalta...

When he was well over 30 years he presented, along with Simó Busom and Antoni Mas, his first exhibition. Although he never quitted his family business, which forced him to paint, more often than not, at unearthly hours, as of 1970 he started to regularly exhibit his paintings. From that date onwards, and until his passing away in 2005, his works have been exhibited in the main art galleries of Catalonia and Spain, as well as abroad, where the remarkable success of his Paris exhibitions should be emphasized.

Capella's work is characterized by a solid composite structure which dissolves in an intensive poetic subjective space. The extraordinary finesse and subtlety of his cold tonal shade, applied in soft glaze coatings with a total command of his palette knife, grants his paintings a slight and almost unnoticeable mysterious atmosphere. The day by day reality (landscape, still life and figure) is painted by Capella with whatever it may have of lyricism and evocation, by balancing line and colour, composition and paint within a subtle and sensible poetry.

Go to the painter's exhibition: 01/2007 - The last master of the school of Paris

Go to the painter's exhibition: 12/2012 - THE COMING MODERNITY

Go to the painter's exhibition: 01/2018 - INSIDE AND OUTSIDE COMPOSITIONS