Lexington, VA 1928 - 2011 Rome, Italy
Together with John Cage, Franz Kline and Robert Motherwell, Cy Twombly studied under the influential teacher and artist Josef Albers and others at Black Mountain College in the 1950s. Starting from Abstract Expressionism, he developed a pictorial language made up of line-emphasised signs and rhythmically interwoven scribblings, combined with subdued colour accentuations and blurrings. His works are usually based on monochrome light or dark surfaces, so the pictures appear extremely subdued. Twombly's repertoire of signs does not lend itself to an unambiguous interpretation; his approach is rather an approximation to the unutterable. Twombly undertook many journeys, mainly through America and the Mediterranean world, and processed the immediate sensory impressions in his works. For instance, his picture titles take up Greek mythology, thus emphasizing the archaic effect of his increasingly lyrical and literary style.
Galerie Thomas Modern devoted its opening exhibition in autumn 2009 to the artists „Beuys – Kiefer – Twombly“. In the exhibition the gallery was able to present a number of works from the 1950s and 60s, in which the artist combined different drawing and painting techniques. Among them were two works from the series „Ten day wait at Mugda“, which he executed with oil, wax crayon, and pencil. The enigmatic title holds a true story:
Twombly and Robert Rauschenberg were travelling in Morocco in a bus. They got off in a small place they liked, by the name of Mugda. After a walk through the village, they returned to the bus stop and inquired when the next bus was due. The answer: In ten days”. The two artists had no choice but to find an accomodation and wait. During the wait Twombly created sketches which he later used in Rome for the series of five paintings entitled “Ten day wait at Mugda”.