Friday 7 March 2014

'Pepita Texidor and her world', International Women's Day, Barcelona - 6th March

Here is the flyer for a talk held yesterday (6th March) in Barcelona given by Maria Isabel Gascon Uceda for International Women's Day (8th March).

Unfortunately I did not have the time to take the trip to Barcelona to listen to the speech... and hopefully Isabel Gascon will be following the talk up with an article.

Monday 10 February 2014

Josefa Texidor Torres

Josefa Texidor Torres
Josefa/Pepita Texidor
8th Feb 1914 - 100 years ago on Saturday marked the death of my great great aunt, Pepita Texidor. It is said that with her death and what followed, this played a central role in the founding of the Catalan Noucentisme art movement. Pepita was famous for her watercolours and paintings of flowers... her paintings were bought by the Royal family and she won several prizes for her paintings at exhibitions in Spain, France and beyond. After her death artists from all over Barcelona (Santiago Rusinol, Ramon Casas, Vayreda) pitched in selling one or two paintings each to raise money for something to remember her by - they decided on a statue - one of few statues in Spain of an actual woman (rather than just a depiction of a fairy or goddess)

It is said that Pepita Texidor Torres "with the raising of her monument, went on to become a symbol of the new Catalan woman and her task that culminated in "Noucentism". - in the papers was written: " is not only to the memory, so sweet and so lasting, of the delicate artist that the monument has been raised: it is to the talent and the work of the Catalan woman, synthesised in the dear and so admired Pepita Texidor."

Rosa Segarra Martí: "They made the homage into a platform to spread their feminist ideas further from its usual environment. And, in short, this made a network of solidarity among women with a common goal: self-recognition and self-significance through the medium of another woman, Pepita Texidor, painter of flowers."

Rosa Segarra Martí: "They made the homage into a platform to spread their feminist ideas further from its usual environment. And, in short, this made a network of solidarity among women with a common goal: self-recognition and self-significance through the medium of another woman, Pepita Texidor, painter of flowers."

Attached is a painting by Pepita which I acquired from an auction in Barcelona. It was stored by my uncle in Barcelona for about a year and then my third cousin, Emilio kindly drove with it to meet me in France. On my return to the Peak District I found that my neighbour was a professional framer, and so I commissioned him to re-frame it. It is as good as new now and hangs proud in my living room.

For a little more background on Pepita see my translation of Nuria Rius' "The Woman: 'Subject' and 'Object' of the Work of Art.

There will be a Tribute to Pepita Texidor by Mª Isabel Gascón at the University of Barcelona on the 6th March 2014 at 19:00.

International Day of the Woman:  Tribute to Pepita Texidor.
In collaboration with the University of Barcelona.  Vice President of Institutional Relations and Culture.

Conference: Pepita Texidor i el seu món - Pepita Texidor and her world.
Mª Isabel Gascón. Universitat de Barcelona, Aula Magna, Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes, 585, Barcelona
Language: Spanish

To mark the centenary of the death of Josefa Texidor we will hold a tribute to her and restore/recover her memory.  Women artists had traditionally been silenced, nullified or discredited by their male colleagues, especially if they engaged in something as feminine as the painting of flowers.  Pepita, painter of flowers, managed to obtain recognition for her work, although the passage of time has relegated her work to oblivion.

Amb motiu del centenari de la defunció de Josefa Teixidor volem rendir-li un homenatge i recuperar la seva memòria. Les dones artistes tradicionalment han estat silenciades, anul·lades o desprestigiades pels seus col·legues masculins, especialment si es dedicaven a alguna cosa tan femenina com la pintura de flors.  Pepita, pintora de flors, va aconseguir obtenir el reconeixement al seu treball, encara que el pas del temps l'hagi relegat a l'oblit.

Also see..

Tuesday 23 November 2010

Manuel Texidor Catasus

Manuel 'Manolo' Texidor Catasus was born in 1901.  He is the 4th son and last child of Emilio Texidor Torres and Dolores Catasus Bues.

He is my grandfather, I never knew him... and as I grew up I was told stories of how he was caught and subsequently escaped from Franco soldiers by jumping from trains... adventure stories... but that was all.  I knew him as Manolo Texidor.  I did not know he was a Catasus (which doesn't help internet searching - it's like searching for John Smith).

When I was 12 or 13, I sat down with my grandmother (Muriel Elisabeth Morris) and wrote down the names she could remember from his life...  brothers, Emilio, Jose, Antonio and sisters, Maria and Mercedes.  My grandmother did not know his parents' names - but knew his father was an artist - nor anything more.  Perhaps I didn't ask, because I don't think I ever knew where they were from... Barcelona? Tossa de Mar? Sitges? - all I knew was that they were from Spain.

My grandmother told me Manolo had been married three times.  The first to Greville Foster.  Second to Carmen Vinyals.  And she was the third.  Manuel had 5 children (that she knew about!!).

Manuel and Greville had a daughter, Cristina who was born in Buenos Aires, and grew up mostly in New Zealand.  Cristina now lives in Spain.

Manuel and Carmen had two children, Pol and Marina.  Pol was born in Spain at the end of the Spanish Civil War.  He was in exile with his mother and father as an infant in Normandy, France.  Marina would have been born in France.

Manuel and Elisabeth (M.E. Morris) had two children, Antonia (my mother) and Mark, both born in England.

Manuel died in Abingdon, near Oxford in 1970, about three months after I was born.  It's possible I only ever met him once and could only gurgle at him.

All this information I wrote down and kept from the age of 14... until I was 31...  when I met my cousin, Izumi Texidor Hirai for the first time in London.....

We knew nothing about Casa Texidor, very little about our grandfather, Manuel Texidor.  And we both were asking questions...

That begins the story... and everything written here I have discovered since...

Thursday 14 October 2010

Modesto Texidor: Portrait of the King praised by Duke of Amalfi

From La Vanguardia - 13th March 1925:


The notable artist, Don Modesto Texidor, has received a letter from the Duke of Almafi, our minister in Vienna, that, at the legation of Spain, they had received the Portrait of His Majesty the King, which [Modesto] had painted; and that all those who had admired it, agreed in praising the happy opening of such work.

Monday 20 September 2010

"TEXI": Winner of the 24 Hour Race at Spa, Belgium

This is from El Mundo Deportivo on 13th July 1932 (my translation):

A Catalan has won in Belgium too!

"TEXI", winner of the 24 Hours race at Spa, Belgium, turns out to be Pepe Texidor, a Catalan motorist, from the heroic times.

When the GP classification was posted for the Belgium 24 hours, we did not think that one of the partners in the winning team in the 4-litre category was a Catalan sportsman, who made his first campaigns on motorbikes and Morgall sidecars, in the heroic times of our motoring history.

Texi, who teamed up with Narischkine, is none other than Pepe Texidor, intensely involved in motorcycling sport at the time of Armangué, Ferran, Arruga, Romano, Orus ... and the initial bursts of enthusiasm and initiative at the Moto Club and at Penya Rhin.

Then, Texidor went abroad and devoted himself there to another sport speciality, which he had cultivated here too: tennis.

He held several posts in France as coach, then moved to Belgium, where in Brussels, with Mr Narischkine, they have several "courts".

When the 24-hour race at Spa was announced, the two partners agreed to sign up with an old Alfa Romeo from 1926, 3.6 litres.

And with this old car the team Texi/Narischkine, took first place in the 4-litre category, after a tough race, in a way special for big cars given the characteristics of the circuit.

And so, it is like Pepe Texidor has made a brilliant re-entry into racing, winning one of the most important tests of speed and endurance.


  1. Pepe Texidor is my great uncle, 'Jose Maria Texidor y Catasus'.  (In the race he is under Jean Marie Texidor).
  2. Vladimir Narichkine is his racing partner.
  3. It appears they came 10th overall.  But came 1st in the 4-litre category.
  4. The car number could be No. 22.
  5. The car was an Alfa Romeo RLTF L6 3600cc
  6. Martin Armangue is his brother-in-law, and was married to my great aunt, Maria Texidor Catasus.
  7. It is reported that he taught tennis to the Belgian Royal Family.

Friday 10 September 2010

Searches: Jose Texidor Belgique & m texidor 1890

I have been looking at the new Statistics pages for this blog on blogspot...  And I think it is useful to look at the largest two searches that people are using to find this website...

Does this blog answer the two top searches in the Statistics?

The top search in the last month is:  jose texidor belgique

Jose Maria Texidor y Catasus... was my grandfather's elder brother.  After or before the Spanish Civil War broke out, Jose had moved to Paris, where he had enrolled at the Art Academy.  He later moved to Belgium. (See my previous post for some more details.)

During his late teenage years, Jose Texidor, together with his brothers and friends, formed the Moto Club de Barcelona, in which they raced motorbikes, side-cars and cars.  Jose played tennis along with his brothers and sisters.  Their names can be found in many Spanish sports newspapers between 1914 and 1929.

Jose was a Bugatti driver for Spain (Bugatti T35B) in the Penya Rhin Grand Prix in 1933 in Barcelona - he finished 7th having completed 36 laps.  This places him in Barcelona in 1933 just before the Civil War.  He was married and had two daughters.  His marriage broke up and he left Spain for France.

On he is listed as driving for Alfa Romeo (car: RLTF) under the name Jean Marie Texidor.  Coming in at 10th place in the Belgian GP in July 1932 24hrs SPA.

Jose may have taken part in about 5 or 6 GP races between 1932 and 1934.

I have also been told that he taught tennis to the Belgian Royal Family, whilst he was living in Belgium...

He is not to be confused (or is he?) with his contemporary, Jose 'Kamalof' Texidor... the boxer... whose fight for the Spanish heavyweight Championship in 1924 had to be fought in Paris.  [Either because his wife was expecting a baby there, or because he had dodged the military draft and would have been arrested if he returned to Spain.]   If anyone knows the second surname of Kamalof, I'd like to know...

The number two search this last month was for: m texidor 1890

The most likely answer to this search is Modesto Texidor y Torres, whose was actively painting landscapes and portraits of the aristocracy in Spain at that time.

Monday 14 December 2009

The Children of Emilio Texidor Torres and Dolores Catasus Bues

Emilio and Dolores had 6 children.
  • Jose Maria Texidor Catasus (May 1892, Barcelona - Jan 1974, Perpignan, France)
  • Emilio Texidor Catasus (Sept 1893, Barcelona - Mar 1974, Barcelona, Spain)
  • Maria de la Concepcion Texidor Catasus (Mar 1896, Barcelona - d.? Barcelona?, Spain)
  • Antonio Texidor Catasus (Jun 1897, Barcelona - d.?, Carcassonne, France)
  • Manuel Texidor Catasus (Mar 1901, Barcelona - Jun 1970, nr Abingdon, Oxon, UK)
  • Maria de la Mercedes Texidor Catasus (May 1902, Barcelona - d.? Barcelona, Spain)
(There were two miscarriages between Emilio & Maria and Antonio & Manuel ...)

I didn't learn their full names until I was 36... not even my grandfather, Manuel... I knew him as 'Manuel Texidor' right up until I was about 32... I discovered his second surname, Catasus, from a book, the title of which I found a reference to in letters from him stored in the Special Collections department of Auckland University Library in New Zealand.

And I have now found the names of their children and discovered some of their grandchildren. My mother knew that some cousins existed ... but now I can say she has about 16 first cousins, not all of whom are still alive.

Every few months I discover yet another story about these brothers and sisters that is new ... I will post some information about what these siblings got up to.... they were the children of the arts/cultural generation. And yet they turned their hands to the more exciting products of the early 19th Century... National/International Sports... especially the very popular motorcycle and motorcar racing, tennis, skiing and so on. Their passion for these mostly new sports somewhat displaced them from the culturally accepted career paths... lawyer/doctor/cleric etc.

When their father, Emilio, died early, this provided yet another responsibility that slowed their careers. Emilio began to help his mother look after the shop, which was renamed to La Viuda de E. Texidor, and which was relocated to Ronda de Sant Pere. This responsibility was on top of his studies to become a doctor.

Manuel was sent off to Argentina to work in the Cork Industry... Jose went to Cuba, but soon returned and then moved to Paris and then Belgium.

After the Spanish Civil War the family had been split up and they were all living in different countries, Emilio, Maria, Mercedes in Spain; Jose and Antonio in France; and Manuel who moved from France to England.

More on their early lives later....