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National Art Museum of Catalonia’s 2016 season to centre around Picasso

The National Art Museum of Catalonia (MNAC) reviewed what its 2016 exhibitions would consist of, although the showings unofficially begun in December of 2015. The star exhibition of the season will be ´Picasso and Romanesque Art´, a joint venture with the Picasso Museum in Paris. Besides this, other exhibition centred onLuis “el Divino” Morales, Renaissance painting, 20th century photography and features on several Catalan artists, such as Lluïsa Vidal and Ismael Smith, will complete the MNAC’s agenda for 2016. The MNAC’s director, Pepe Serra, celebrated that the museum is finally “starting to have a normal planning rhythm for a museum of its size” which will allow the MNAC’s calendar to synchronise with “other international museums”.

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08 March 2016 08:05 PM

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ACN

Barcelona (CNA).- A comparison between Picasso and Romanesque art will be one of the highlights of The National Art Museum of Catalonia (MNAC)’s 2016 season. Besides this, other exhibition centred on Luis “el Divino” Morales, Renaissance painting, 20th century photography and features on several Catalan artists, such as Lluïsa Vidal and Ismael Smith, will complete the MNAC’s agenda for 2016. The museum also announced the postponing of its upcoming Baroque and Renaissance exhibition, originally planned for autumn 2016, to spring of 2017. The MNAC’s director, Pepe Serra, celebrated that the museum is finally “starting to have a normal planning rhythm for a museum of its size” which will allow the MNAC’s calendar to synchronise with “other international museums”.


The MNAC reviewed what its 2016 exhibitions would consist of, although the showings unofficially begun in December of 2015. The star exhibition of the season will be ´Picasso and Romanesque Art´, a joint venture with the Picasso Museum in Paris. This showing will explore influences between the work of the Spanish painter and the art of the Romanesque period. The painter was in fact well acquainted with the movement thanks to his stay in 1906 Gósol, a village in Catalonia, and a visit to the MNAC itself in 1934. The exhibition will take place in the section of the museum dedicated to Romanesque art, with the objective of allowing the observer to establish “possible similarities” between the two.

Other outstanding examples of the programme include a temporary exhibit, featuring 19 recently acquired works (given by Antonio Gallardo Ballart) which will subsequently be included into the permanent medieval and Renaissance art collection. Patrons can also look forward to an exhibition dedicated to the Renaissance painter Luis de Morales, i.e. “Divino Morales” (as he was known), which is a product of the MNAC´s collaboration with the Prado Museum of Madrid and the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum. Outside the walls of the museum itself, one can also enjoy a showing held in the Cau Ferrat Museum in Sitges (a seaside town southwest of Barcelona) to mark the 150th birthday of Ramon Casas, Catalan artist and portraitist. The showing is inspired by a piece recently acquired by the MNAC, a collection of 9 Chinese shadow puppets drawn by the painter. The museum will also feature a ´discovery´ of photographer Marianne Breslauer and of her journey to Spain in 1933, which will be held in one of the permanent exhibition halls. Moreover, the MNAC will continue its series of monographic expositions developed in the last few years, focused on “recovering” relevant artists. In 2016, the protagonist will be Lluïsa Vidal, one of the few women artists represented in the collection, as well as Ismael Smith, who was “one of the most important Catalan sculptors”, according to Pepe Serra.

Looking ahead

According to Pepe Serra, the MNAC is finally “starting to have a normal planning rhythm for a museum of its size”. This rhythm, Serra reiterates, “should continue as planned” and will allow the MNAC´s calendar to synchronise with “other international museums”.

“The museum is strong”, Serra asserts, referring to having survived many years of budget cuts and internal restructuring. While the museum starts out with an extension of their 2015 budget, Serra relies on the fact thatgovernment funding for the museum will increase in 2016 and in the years to come. With this prediction, in fact, the museum plans to allocate 1.1 million euros to its exhibition projects, a much higher sum than the 700,000 euros available in 2015. However, this rise ultimately depends on said increase in public funding. Budget aside, the planning of some long-term projects has already been “finalised” for the 2017 and 2018. Pepe Serra disclosed a few.

“We have a series prepared for the coming years, an intersecting thematic series centred on our collection”, Serra announced. In 2017, in collaboration with a Parisian museum, the MNAC is preparing an exhibition “centred on the idea of revolution”, as well as a monographic dedicated to painter Gabriele Münter. One will also be able to enjoy an exhibition about ´Arts and Crafts´, organised jointly with Madrid, centred on William Morris.

“Working on eponymous collections is one of our objectives”, noted head curator Juanjo Lahuerta. In this case, he added, it´s specifically about relating our Modernism collection with its “international parallels”.

The new Baroque and Renaissance collection will have to wait

In the spring of 2017, the MNAC will unveil the presentation of its new Baroque and Renaissance art collection, the design of which is almost completed. This is an “extraordinary” collection, taking after the museum´s medieval and modernist ones, according to Lahuerta. Ultimately, the collection will not be presented this autumn, as originally planned, due to the projected high exhibition activity of the museum

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  • MNAC's director, Pepe Serra, announced the highlights for 2016 season (by ACN)

  • MNAC's director, Pepe Serra, announced the highlights for 2016 season (by ACN)