Terenci Moix (Barcelona, 5 January 1942 - 2 April 2003) was the pen name of Ramon Moix i Messeguer, a novelist and narrator in Catalan and Spanish, a columnist specialising in cinema, a playwright and occasional translator, who had a dazzling career as a Catalan fiction writer in the late sixties and through the seventies.
Born into a lineage of craftsmen in the Raval neighbourhood of Barcelona, he studied business, typing, topographic drawing and dramatic art. He travelled to Paris in 1963 and London in 1964. By the age of eighteen he had written two crime novels and another fictional work of eight hundred pages.
In 1967 he published his first essay on cinema, followed by another, on comics and written in Spanish, in 1968. In 1967, too, he received the Víctor Català Prize for the short story collection La torre dels vicis capitals (The Tower of Deadly Sins), followed by the 1968 Josep Pla Prize for Fiction for Onades sobre una roca deserta (Waves on a Deserted Rock), while the novel El dia que va morir Marilyn (The Day Marilyn Died) was awarded the "Serra d'Or" Critics' Prize for the Novel in 1970. In 1974 he published the play Tartan dels micos contra l'estreta de l'Ensanxe (Tartan of the Apes versus the Narrowing of the Ensanxe”). Disgruntled with his milieu, however, and focusing on other literary matters, he was not to publish another novel until 1983 and, when he did so, it was in Spanish: Nuestro virgen de los mártires (Our Virgen of the Martyrs). In the last two decades of his life he published mainly in Spanish with resounding success among readers. In 1986, he received the Planeta Prize for No digas que fue un sueño (Don't Say it Was a Dream), a novel of extraordinary popular acclaim. In 1992 he published his last novel in Catalan. Winner of the Ramon Llull Prize, this work, El sexe dels àngels (The Sex of Angels), was a true vade mecum of Catalan society and culture at the time.
Terenci Moix died of pulmonary emphysema in April 2003 at the age of 61.
Web page: Abel Ramon Vidal for AELC.
Translation: Julie Wark.
Images ceded by: Juan Ramón Iborra.