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Maria MANTON (1910 - 1993)

Maria Manton was born in Blida (Algerie) in 1910. Her fater, pursuing a military career, had his base there.

Passionated about Egyptology, she began higher studies in this field, but finally had to give it up due to an illness that stayed with her for more than one year. It is at this moment that she starts to draw.

After the war she moved to Paris, with her husband Louis Nallard, where she became a majeur figure of the Saint-Germain-des-Près in the 1950s. The couple lived in a hotel at rue Vieux Colombier, where Robert Hossein, César et Serge Poliakoff stayed among others. Her gouaches, of a rigorous abstraction, where exhibited at the gallery Colette Allendy and at the gallery Lydia Conti where her works stood alongside Hans Hartung, Gérard Schneider and Pierre Soulages. 

At the same time, Maria Manton became the general secretary of the Salon des Réalités Nouvelles, a salon of which she invested a great deal all her life.

Her work evolved by time, the colors, shapes, patterns and motifs changed. She gradually detached herself from this absolute abstraction that was so dear to her in the 1950s. Without being figurative, natural landscapes, architectural constructions, human silhouettes and the fruit of many trips to the Mediterranean appeared in her paintings.

Personal exhibitions followed one another, her works entered in the collections of the greatest French museums and in 2003, on the eve of an exhibition called “Mother Algeria”, organized by the Museum of Villeneuve-sur-Lot, where Manessier, Bouqueton, Nallard and Tibouchi were exhibited among others, Maria Manton died at the age of 93.

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