Today’s Doodle, created by guest artist Melissa Crowton, honours José de Almada Negreiros’ life, work, and artistic legacy. He was a multi-faceted Futurist artist, writer, and choreographer widely regarded as one of the most significant Portuguese and European artists of the twentieth century. Almada Negreiros made his creative debut on this day in 1911, when he was 18 years old, by releasing a cartoon titled “A Weighty Reason” in the 4th issue of A Sátira, a Lisbon magazine.
In 1893, he was born on the island of So Tomé and Prncipe, where he began his career as a caricaturist. What began as humorous sketches evolved into a self-taught passion for all things artistic. Almada Negreiros held his first exhibition in Lisbon when he was only 20 years old. In 1914, he published his first poem, and in 1915, he founded Orpheu, a progressive literary magazine that championed Portuguese Modernism.
Almada Negreiros resided in Paris and Madrid during the 1920s, perfecting his craft and skills via collaboration and, at times, isolation. When he returned to Portugal in 1932, he added stained-glass pieces, mosaic panels, theatrical plays, ballets, graphic designs, and more to his artistic portfolio.
Almada Negreiros received the Columbano Prize from the National Secretariat of Propaganda in 1942 and the Domingos Sequeira Award from the National Secretariat of Propaganda in 1946, among many other honours and distinctions. His work may be found in museums all throughout Europe, including the Calouste Gulbenkian Museum in Lisbon, the port terminals of Alcântara and Rocha do Conde de Bidos, and the lounge bar of the Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon.