The American Cy Twombly was born in 1928 in Lexington/Virginia and died in 2011 in Rome and is perhaps the most iconic artist in the Museum Brandhorst’s collection. After pursuing an art degree at various universities, Twombly briefly visited Black Mountain College, after which he began a journey through Europe and North Africa with Robert Rauschenberg. This trip marked the beginning of Twombly’s preoccupation with the Mediterranean, which would become one of his most important sources of inspiration. As with no other artist, Twombly’s work forges a sensitive and lyrical connection between image and text. Alongside Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns, he is the most important representative of the generation to immediately follow the Abstract Expressionists and inherit their legacy of abstraction. Along with these two colleagues, Twombly succeeded in ushering in an important new era in American art while developing a highly personal and influential visual language.
Consisting of twelve pictures, Twombly’s monumental work Lepanto (2001), is permanently displayed in the central hall of the museum, according to the wishes of the artist. With more than 170 works – including paintings, sculptures, and drawings – from different periods of the artist’s work, the Museum Brandhorst’s comprehensive overview of this unique artist’s development is the most important of its kind outside of the US, comparable only to the Cy Twombly Gallery of the Menil Collection in Houston, Texas.