Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Photo: This Is the Color of My Dreams

Joan Miró (Spanish, Barcelona 1893–1983 Palma de Mallorca)
Oil on canvas
38 × 51 in. (96.5 × 129.5 cm)
Frame: 40 1/4 × 53 1/4 × 2 1/2 in. (102.2 × 135.3 × 6.4 cm)
Credit Line:
The Pierre and Maria-Gaetana Matisse Collection, 2002
Accession Number:
Rights and Reproduction:
© 2018 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 901
This work is part of a series created between 1924 and 1927 known as "peinture-poésie" (painting-poetry), which combines text with enigmatic symbols and reflects his interest in dreams and the subconscious. Only three elements float on the empty white canvas: the word "Photo," the patch of blue, and the phrase "ceci est la couleur de mes rêves" (this is the color of my dreams). The black letters sit on barely visible pencil lines that serve as guides for their size, as in a child’s writing primer.
Inscription: Signed and dated (lower right): Miró/ 1925
[Jacques Viot of Galerie Pierre (Pierre Loeb), Paris, from 1925; acquired from the artist in late October or early November 1925; probably to Ernst]; Max Ernst, Paris (by 1927; probably to Oppenheim); Meret Oppenheim, Paris (in 1930s); James Johnson Sweeney, New York (by 1964–68; sold in December 1968 to Pierre Matisse Gallery); Pierre Matisse, New York (1968–d. 1989; stock no. 7649); his widow, Maria-Gaetana Matisse, née von Spreti, New York (1989–d. 2001); Pierre and Maria-Gaetana Matisse Foundation (2002; gift to MMA)

Tate Gallery, London. "Joan Miró," August 27–October 11, 1964, no. 48.

Knokke. Casino Communal. "Joan Miró," June 26–August 29, 1971, no. 7.

Munich. Haus der Kunst. "Der Surrealismus 1922–1942," March 11–May 7, 1972, no. 325.

Paris. Musée des Arts Décoratifs. "Le Surréalisme, 1922–1942," June 9–September 24, 1972, no. 310.

New York. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. "Joan Miró: Magnetic Fields," October 27, 1972–January 21, 1973, no. 14.

Paris. Grand Palais. "Joan Miró," May 17–October 13, 1974, no. 25.

Humlebaek. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. "Joan Miró," November 19, 1974–January 12, 1975, no. 8.

London. Hayward Gallery. "Dada and Surrealism Reviewed," January 11–March 27, 1978, no. 9.54.

Madrid. Museo Español de Arte Contemporáneo. "Joan Miró: Pintura," May 4–July 23, 1978, no. 21.

Palma de Mallorca. Sa Llotja. "Joan Miró," September 4–October 1978, no. 7.

Barcelona. Fundació Joan Miró. "Joan Miró: Anys 20. Mutació de la Realitat," May–June 1983, no. 69.

Madrid. Museo Español de Arte Contemporaneo. "Joan Miró: Años 20. Mutación de la realidad," June–July 1983, no. 69.

Kunsthaus Zürich. "Joan Miró," November 21, 1986–February 1, 1987, no. 42.

Städtische Kunsthalle Düsseldorf. "Joan Miró," February 14–April 20, 1987, no. 42.

New York. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. "Joan Miró: A Retrospective," May 15–August 23, 1987, no. 35.

Los Angeles County Museum of Art. "The Dada and Surrealist Word-Image," June 15–August 27, 1989, no. 25.

Saint-Paul-de-Vence. Fondation Maeght. "Joan Miró: Rétrospective de l'œuvre peint," July 4–October 7, 1990, no. 20.

Barcelona. Fundació Joan Miró. "Joan Miró, 1893–1993," April 20–August 30, 1993, no. 66 (as "Ceci est la couleur de mes rèves," lent by a private collection).

Museum of Modern Art, New York. "Joan Miró," October 17, 1993–January 11, 1994, no. 42 (lent by Private Collection).

Haus der Kunst München. "Elan vital oder Das Auge des Eros," May 20–August 14, 1994, no. 454.

Kunsthalle Vienna. "Das grausame Spiel: Surrealismus in Spanien, 1924–1939," May 12–July 16, 1995, no. 119 (lent by a private collection).

Martigny. Fondation Pierre Gianadda. "Miró: Ceci est la couleur de mes rêves," June 6–November 11, 1997, no. 9.

Mexico City. Centro Cultural Arte Contemporáneo. "Joan Miró, la Colección del Centro Georges Pompidou, Musée National d'Art Moderne y otras colecciones," February 12–May 24, 1998, no. 7.

Humlebaek. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. "Joan Miró," September 18, 1998–January 10, 1999, no. 11.

Paris. Centre Georges Pompidou. "Joan Miró, 1917–1934: La naissance du monde," March 3–June 28, 2004, no. 83.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Pierre and Maria-Gaetana Matisse Collection," May 18, 2004–June 26, 2005, no catalogue.

Paris. Mona Bismarck Foundation. "Pierre Matisse, passeur passionné: Un marchand d'art et ses artistes," October 20, 2005–January 14, 2006, unnumbered cat. (p. 128).

Museo Picasso Málaga. "La Colección Pierre y Maria-Gaetana Matisse en The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Nueva York," March 26–June 24, 2007, no. 47.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Philippe de Montebello Years: Curators Celebrate Three Decades of Acquisitions," October 24, 2008–February 1, 2009, online catalogue.

Paris. Musée National d'Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou. "La Subversion des Images. Surrealism, Photographie, Film," September 23, 2009–January 4, 2010, unnumbered cat. (pp. 2–3).

Fotomuseum Winterthur. "La Subversion des Images. Surrealism, Photographie, Film," February 26–May 23, 2010, unnumbered cat.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Miró: The Dutch Interiors," October 5, 2010–January 17, 2011, no catalogue.

Vancouver Art Gallery. "The Colour of My Dreams: The Surrealist Revolution in Art," May 28–September 25, 2011, unnumbered cat. (pp. 72–73; as "Photo: Ceci est la couleur de mes rêves").

Madrid. Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza. "Surrealism and the Dream," October 8, 2013–January 12, 2014, no. 59.

Jacques Dupin. Joan Miró. Paris, 1961, pp. 158, 494, no. 125.

Jacques Dupin. Joan Miró: Life and Work. New York, [1962], pp. 168, 510, no. 125.

Roland Penrose. Miró. New York, 1969, pp. 44, 208, no. 27, ill. p. 46.

Herta Wescher. Collage. New York, 1971, p. 190.

William Rubin. Miró in the Collection of the Museum of Modern Art. New York, 1973, pp. 125, 126, n. 3, fig. 47.

Jean Leymarie. "Joan Miró [excerpts from Exh. Paris 1974 catalogue]." Le petit journal des grandes expositions no. 11 (1974), p. [2].

Giovanni Lista. "Tre mostre a Parigi; gli 81 ani di Miró." [Unidentified journal] (Summer 1974), p. 38.

Angelica Zander Rudenstine. The Guggenheim Museum Collection. Vol. 2, Paintings 1880–1945. New York, 1976, p. 522.

Margit Rowell. Joan Mirò: Peinture=poésie. [Paris], 1976, pp. 161, 163, 171, 189 n. 55, p. 203, ill. p. 160.

Simon Wilson. Surrealist Painting. London, 1976, p. 42, ill. (1982 ed., no. 7, ill.).

Joan Miró. "Ceci est la couleur de mes rêves": Entretiens avec Georges Raillard. Paris, 1977, pp. 69, 81, ill. p. 21.

Pere Gimferrer. Miró, catalan universel. Paris, 1978, p. 122.

John Russell. "Miró's Impact in America." New York Times (June 13, 1982), p. H48.

Roland Penrose. "Enchantment and Revolution–Joan Miró." Artforum 22 (November 1983), pp. 56–57, ill.

Georges Weelen. Miró. Paris, 1984, p. 12, no. 11.

Margit Rowell. "Bleu II, 1961, de Joan Miró." Cahiers du Musée national d'art moderne 15 (March 1985), p. 56, fig. 12, ill. p. 55.

Margit Rowell, ed. Joan Miró: Selected Writings and Interviews. Boston, 1986, p. 90.

Christa Spatz. "Schwarzer Stern in kinderbunten Träumen: Joam Miró in Kunsthaus Zürich. Die erste Retrospektive nach seinem Tod." Frankfurter Rundschau (December 27, 1986), p. 2.

Christopher Green. Cubism and Its Enemies: Modern Movements and Reaction in French Art, 1916–1928. New Haven, 1987, p. 289.

Michael Brenson. "Art: Miró Revisited in Guggenheim Show." New York Times (May 15, 1987), p. C26.

Paul Depondt. "Eerste overzichtsexpositie sinds zijn dood; Woord en teken vloeien bij Miró in elkaar over." Die Volkskrant (March 18, 1987), unknown page number.

Amine Haase. "Joan Miró in Düsseldorf: Eine Ausstellung verändert den Blick auf die Bilderwelt." Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger (February 14, 1987).

Bruce Duff Hooton. "Major Miró Exhibit at the Guggenheim." Art/World, Latest Museum and Gallery Guide 11 (May 15–June 15, 1987), p. 6, ill. p.1.

Hannah Humeltenberg. "Mirós Mondgesicht am Rhein." Höchst Kreisblatt Frankfurt (February 28, 1987).

Marion Leske. "Joan Miró-Retrospektive in der Kunsthalle Düsseldorf; Vom Lächeln der Sterne." General Anzeiger Bonn (February 21, 1987).

Gisela Linder. "Bildgedichte-von aller Erdenschwere losgelöst; Bei der Zürcher Miró-Ausstellung liegt ein Hauptakzent auf dem Frühwerk des Spaniers." Schwäbische Zeitung Leutkirch (January 7, 1987).

Bertram Müller. "Miró-Ausstellung in der Düsseldorf Kunsthalle; Landschaften der Erregung." Rheinische Post (February 14, 1987).

Peter Winter. "Die Farbe der Träume: Ein Rückblick auf das Werk Joan Mirós in der Düsseldorfer Kunsthalle." Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (March 24, 1987).

Georges Raillard. Miró. Paris, 1989, pp. 7, 80–81, ill.

Judi Freeman in The Dada and Surrealist Word-Image. Exh. cat., Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History. Los Angeles, 1989, p. 43.

Victoria Combalía. El Descubrimiento de Miró: Miró y sus críticos, 1918–1929. Barcelona, 1990, unpaginated, ill.

Maïten Bouisset. "La ferme de Monsieur Miró." Beaux arts no. 82 (September 1990), p. 129.

Roland Penrose. Joan Miró. New York and Paris, 1990, p. 46, no. 27, ill.

Rosamond Bernier. Matisse, Picasso, Miró As I Knew Them. New York, 1991, pp. 236–37, ill.

Pere Gimferrer. The Roots of Miró. Barcelona, 1993, p. 341, no. 224, ill.

Jacques Dupin. Miró. Paris, 1993, pp. 117, 128, 435–36, fig. 454.

Rosamond Bernier. "Miró en persona." Saber ver lo contemporaneo del arte no. 28 (May–June 1996), p. 36, ill. p. 35 (Spanish reprint of Ref. Bernier 1991).

Jacques Dupin and Ariane Lelong-Mainaud. Joan Miró: Catalogue raisonné. Paintings. Vol. 1, 1908–1930. [Paris], 1999, pp. 124–25, no. 147, ill.

Agnès Angliviel de la Beaumelle. Joan Miró: La collection du Centre Georges Pompidou, Musée national d'art moderne. Exh. cat., Musée d'art contemporain de Bordeaux. Paris, 1999, pp. 20–21, 185, ill.

Rosa Maria Malet, ed. Fundació Joan Miró, Guía. Exh. cat.Barcelona, 1999, p. 18 (installation view of Exh. Barcelona 1983).

Sabine Rewald in "Recent Acquisitions: A Selection, 2002–2003." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 61 (Fall 2003), p. 43, ill.

William S. Lieberman in "Selections from the Pierre and Maria-Gaetana Matisse Collection." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 61 (Spring 2004), pp. 14–15.

Jacques Dupin and Ariane Lelong-Mainaud. Joan Miró: Catalogué raisonné. Paintings. Vol. 6, 1976–1981. Paris, 2004, p. 261.

Jacinto Lagueira. "Peintures-Poèmes." Miró: 1917-1934. Connaissance des arts no. 212 (2004), p. 30, ill.

Sabine Rewald. The American Matisse: The Dealer, His Artists, His Collection. The Pierre and Maria-Gaetana Matisse Collection. New York, 2009, pp. 123–124, 164, ill. (color).

Oliver Wick in Surrealism in Paris. Ed. Philippe Büttner. Exh. cat., Fondation Beyeler. Riehen/Basel, 2011, p. 56.

Dawn Ades in Surrealism and the Dream. Exh. cat., Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza. Madrid, 2013, pp. 75–77, 82, 86–90, 93, 343, no. 59, ill. (color) pp. 76, 175, 343.

Mary Ann Caws in Surrealism and the rue Blomet. Exh. cat., Eykyn Maclean, LP. New York, 2013, pp. 14, 26 n. 21, fig. 6 (color).

Related Objects

Book cover

Artist: Joan Miró (Spanish, Barcelona 1893–1983 Palma de Mallorca) Medium: Photomechanical reproduction Accession: MuseumAccession1973 On view in:Not on view

Untitled in Derriere le Miroir

Artist: Joan Miró (Spanish, Barcelona 1893–1983 Palma de Mallorca) Date: 1956 Medium: Etching Accession: 1994.604.3 On view in:Not on view

Untitled in Derriere le Miroir

Artist: Joan Miró (Spanish, Barcelona 1893–1983 Palma de Mallorca) Date: 1956 Medium: Color lithograph Accession: 1994.604.4 On view in:Not on view


Artist: Joan Miró (Spanish, Barcelona 1893–1983 Palma de Mallorca) Date: 1927 Medium: Tempera and oil on canvas Accession: 1984.207 On view in:Not on view

Circus Horse

Artist: Joan Miró (Spanish, Barcelona 1893–1983 Palma de Mallorca) Date: 1927 Medium: Tempera on canvas Accession: 2006.32.44 On view in:Gallery 913