Surrealist art António Dacosta

António Dacosta (3 November 1914 in Angra do Heroísmo, Azores, Portugal – 2 December 1990, Paris, France) was a Portuguese painter, poet and art critic and a pioneer of the surrealistic movement in Portugal.
In 1969 Dacosta attended a retrospective of his works from 1939 to 1948 at the Galeria Buchholz in Lisbon and in 1978 his paintings were included in Portuguese Art since 1910 at the Royal Academy of London, a show that he visited with his friend and fellow-artist, Júlio Pomar.

Although he had no formal art training, Dacosta drew and painted from an early age. He completed his studies at the Angra high school and in 1935 left the Azores to attend the Escola de Belas Artes (School of Fine Arts) in Lisbon. Strongly opposed to the Salazar dictatorship in Portugal and horrified by the violence of the Spanish Civil War and the subsequent Nationalist victory, his painting took a menacing and surrealistic turn. He displayed his first paintings at Casa Repe in 1940 along with António Pedro and an English sculptor, Pamela Boden. He also showed at the annual national Salon of Modern Art where he won the Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso Prize in 1942.
He became one of the forerunners of the surrealistic movement in Portugal. Many of his surrealist paintings were lost in a fire in 1944 in the studio where he was working. The remaining paintings are owned by private collectors or Portuguese museums .Wikipedia

 In 1947, the French government awarded him a grant to spend a year in Paris, where he stayed for the rest of his life. For the first time, he was in direct contact with original masterpieces as well as the works of contemporary international artists. Post-war creativity was a revelation to him and he began to doubt the importance of his own work. He progressively stopped painting but nonetheless in 1948 sent two paintings to the Surrealist Group Show in Lisbon. In 1952, his first successful one-man show (17 Paintings 1940 – 1950) was held at the Galeria de Março in Lisbon. By 1953, he was no longer painting. He became a reporter for a Brazilian newspaper O Estado, writing about the Paris art scene (theatre, literature and art exhibitions). These articles (as well as articles written for Portuguese magazines) were later published in book-form « Dacosta em Paris » by Assirio & Alvim (1999).
Dacosta is today considered a pioneer of Portuguese surrealist art. In the 1950s, many Portuguese artists, including René Bertholo, travelled to Paris in search of new ideas and Dacosta became a valuable inspiration for them and a source of information about Parisian artistic life.Wikipedia

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