Anton Zoran Music was born on 11 February 1909 in Gorizia (Italy) which at that time was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. After an initial fascination with the works of Klimt and Schiele, which he discovered during his family's sojourns in Vienna, and thanks to the advice of the Croatian painter Babic, his teacher at the Fine Arts Academy in Zagreb, Music moved to Spain in 1935. There, he travelled all over the wide Castilian landscapes, and spent long sessions working in the Prado copying El Greco and Goya, whose black romanticism greatly influenced his later works. The outbreak of the Spanish Civil War took him to Dalmatia, where he discovered the semi-desert and petrified landscapes of Kras and at the start of the Second World War he moved to Venice, where he held his first individual exhibition as early as 1943. In 1944 he was accused of supporting the anti-Nazi groups, arrested by the Gestapo and deported to Dachau concentration camp. There, in a sort of creative frenzy, he made about 180 drawings of his dead friends, which can be considered the origin of paintings made between 1970 and 1975, We are not the last, a series of "collective deaths" which Music understood as the cry of the eternally suffering humanity, like the evidence of a collective trauma beyond all individual traits. After various sojourns in Venice, Music settled in Paris in 1952, and worked on paintings whose abstract appearance conceals constant memories of the arid landscapes of Dalmatia (Dalmatian Lands and Rocky Landscapes) and of the light and the sky of Venice. In Paris he also made some etchings in Lacourières studio, for which he was awarded the Grand Prix in the Graphic Arts competition at the Venice Biennial Exhibition in 1956, and in 1957 he received the Graphic Arts Prize in Ljubljana. After the first retrospective presentation of his oeuvre at the Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris in 1972, various retrospective exhibitions were held, in particular in 1977 in Darmstadt, in 1992 at the Albertine in Vienna, exhibiting his work on paper, and those of the Grand Palais in Paris in 1995, which included, in addition to his landscapes, two new series by the artist, his Self-Portraits (1987) and Workshops (1990).

Anna Maria Guasch