Cy Twombly
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image 1
Study for the Triumph of Galatea

1961
Medium: Wax crayon and pencil on paper
Sheet size: 10.7 x 13.98 inches
Signed and dated 'Cy Twombly, May 1961 Focene' in pencil, upper margin

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image 2
Natural History Part I: No. I

1974
Medium: Mixed media lithograph
Sheet size: 30 x 22 inches
Printer: Matthieu Studio, Zurich-Deilsdorf, Germany
Publisher: Propylaen Verlag, Berlin, Germany
Edition size: 98, plus proofs
Catalogue raisonné: Bastian 42
Signed and numbered, lower margin

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image 3
Natural History Part I: No. II

1974
Medium: Mixed media lithograph
Sheet size: 30 x 22 inches
Printer: Matthieu Studio, Zurich-Deilsdorf, Germany
Publisher: Propylaen Verlag, Berlin, Germany
Edition size: 98, plus proofs
Catalogue raisonné: Bastian 43
Signed and numbered, lower margin

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image 4
Natural History Part I: No. III

1974
Medium: Mixed media lithograph
Sheet size: 30 x 22 inches
Printer: Matthieu Studio, Zurich-Deilsdorf, Germany
Publisher: Propylaen Verlag, Berlin, Germany
Edition size: 98, plus proofs
Catalogue raisonné: Bastian 44
Signed and numbered, lower margin

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image 5
Natural History Part I: No. VI

1974
Medium: Mixed media lithograph
Sheet size: 30 x 22 inches
Printer: Matthieu Studio, Zurich-Deilsdorf, Germany
Publisher: Propylaen Verlag, Berlin, Germany
Edition size: 98, plus proofs
Catalogue raisonné: Bastian 47
Signed and numbered, lower margin

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image 6
Natural History Part I: No. VII

1974
Medium: Mixed media lithograph
Sheet size: 30 x 22 inches
Printer: Matthieu Studio, Zurich-Deilsdorf, Germany
Publisher: Propylaen Verlag, Berlin, Germany
Edition size: 98, plus proofs
Catalogue raisonné: Bastian 48
Signed and numbered, lower margin

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image 7
Natural History Part I: No. VIII

1974
Medium: Mixed media lithograph
Sheet size: 30 x 22 inches
Printer: Matthieu Studio, Zurich-Deilsdorf, Germany
Publisher: Propylaen Verlag, Berlin, Germany
Edition size: 98, plus proofs
Catalogue raisonné: Bastian 49
Signed and numbered, lower margin

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image 8
Natural History Part I: No. X

1974
Medium: Mixed media lithograph
Sheet size: 30 x 22 inches
Printer: Matthieu Studio, Zurich-Deilsdorf, Germany
Publisher: Propylaen Verlag, Berlin, Germany
Edition size: 98, plus proofs
Catalogue raisonné: Bastian 51
Signed and numbered, lower margin

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image 9
Natural History Part II: Ficus Carica

1975-76
Medium: Mixed media lithograph
Sheet size: 30 x 22 inches
Printer: Matthieu Studio, Zurich-Deilsdorf, Germany
Publisher: Propylaen Verlag, Berlin, Germany
Edition size: 98, plus proofs
Catalogue raisonné: Bastian 59
Initialed and numbered, lower margin 

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image 10
Natural History Part II: Some Trees of Italy

1975-76
Medium: The complete portfolio of eight lithographs with mixed media
Sheet size: 30 x 22 inches, each
Printer: Matthieu Studio, Zurich-Deilsdorf, Germany
Publisher: Propylaen Verlag, Berlin, Germany
Edition size: 98, plus proofs
Catalogue raisonné: Bastian 42
Initialed and numbered, lower margin, each 

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image 11
Gaeta Set (For the Love of Fire and Water)

1993
Medium: Book with 8 poems by Octavio Paz and ten offset lithographs by Cy Twombly
Sheet size: 11 7/8 x 9 1/4 inches
Printer: Til Verclas, Hamburg, Germany
Publisher: Udo and Anette Brandhorst, Cologne, Germany
Edition size: 1000, plus proofs

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Cy Twombly was born in 1928, in Lexington, Virginia. From 1948 to 1951, he studied at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Washington and Lee University, Lexington; and the Art Students League, New York, where he met Robert Rauschenberg. At Rauschenberg's encouragement, he attended Black Mountain College, near Asheville, North Carolina, in 1951 and 1952, where he studied under Franz Kline, Robert Motherwell, and Ben Shahn.

The Kootz Gallery, New York, organized his first solo exhibition in 1951. At this time, his work was influenced by Kline's black-and-white gestural Expressionism, as well as by Paul Klee's childlike imagery. In 1952, Twombly received a grant from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts that enabled him to travel to North Africa, Spain, Italy, and France. Upon his return in 1953, he served in the army as a cryptologist. From 1955 to 1959, he worked in New York and Italy, finally settling in Rome. It was during this period that he began to create his first abstract sculptures, which, although varied in shape and material, were always coated with white paint. 

In Italy, he began to work on a larger scale and distanced himself from his former expressionist scribbles, moving toward a more literal use of text and numbers, drawing inspiration from poetry, mythology, and classic history. He subsequently created a vocabulary of various signs and marks, sometimes sexually charged, that read on a metaphorical level rather than according to any form of traditional iconography.

Twombly was invited to exhibit his work at the Venice Biennale in 1964. In 1968, the Milwaukee Art Center mounted the first retrospective of his art. The artist has been honored by numerous other shows, including major retrospectives at the Kunsthaus Zurich in 1987; the Musee National d'Art Moderne, Paris, in 1988; and the Museum of Modern Art, New York, in 1994, with additional venues in Houston, Los Angeles, and Berlin. In 1995, the Cy Twombly Gallery opened in Houston, exhibiting works made by the artist since 1954. Twombly died in 2011.

 

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