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Carmen Thyssen shows a selection of her private painting collection on the Costa Brava

Catalan and international painting from 1870 to 1970 will interact to show the relation between people and landscape. The exhibition ‘Landscapes of light, dream landscapes. From Gauguin to Delvaux’ kicks off the activities at the Espai Carmen Thyssen, in Sant Feliu de Guíxols Monastry, on the Costa Brava. This will be the first of many exhibitions in this Catalan coastal town, said Carmen Thyssen. In fact the Baroness and the town’s City Council are planning to build a permanent Thyssen Museum in the town. Thyssen also stated that it would be “wonderful” to show more paintings in her collection at Catalonia’s National Art Museum’s expansion.


05 July 2012 10:49 PM


ACN / Xavier Pi / Marina López

Sant Feliu de Guíxols (ACN).- A selection of one of the world\u2019s most important private collections of painting will be on show this summer at Sant Feliu de Guíxols, a coastal town located in Catalonia\u2019s Costa Brava. A varied selection of 53 paintings from Catalan and international authors, belonging to Carman Thyssen\u2019s private collection, will set a dialogue to display the evolution of painting between 1870 and 1970 and showing the interaction of people and landscape. The exhibition called \u2018Paisatges de llum paisatges de Somni. De Gauguin a Delvaux\u2019 (\u2018Landscapes of light, dream landscapes. From Guaguin to Delvaux\u2019 in English) will kick off the activities of the new exhibition space located in Sant Feliu de Guíxols Monestry, sponsored by the Thyssen Baroness. The \u2018Espai Carmen Thyssen\u2019 will host this temporary exhibition from July 7th to October 7th. At the exhibition\u2019s presentation held  on Thursday, Carmen Thyssen hoped this show will be the first of many in Sant Feliu de Guíxols. In fact, the Baroness and Sant Feliu\u2019s town hall are planning the creation of a permanent Thyssen Museum in this Catalan coastal town, where the Thyssen family has one of its residences. The project has been put on hold due to the current economic context, but both parts insisted in Thursday\u2019s presentation that they have the intention to build the museum in the mid-term. Besides Sant Feliu\u2019s projects, Carmen Thyssen said it would be \u201Cwonderful\u201D to reach an agreement with Catalonia\u2019s National Museum of Art (MNAC), located in Barcelona, to show part of her collection in the museum\u2019s future enlargement. In addition, she said that selling paintings is not pleasant but that selling \u2018The Lock\u2019 by John Constable does not have an effect on the collection, as the picture was a bit \u201Con its own\u201D. 

The economic crisis slowed down the opening of Sant Feliu\u2019s Thyssen Museum in the Can Serra\u2019s former factory, but a smaller space to host temporary exhibitions and show the paintings of the Thyssen collection has been opened. The first exhibition will be formed by 53 paintings, shown in 8 rooms of the recently created \u2018Espai Carmen Thyssen\u2019, sponsored by the Baroness. In fact Carmen Thyssen engaged in offering paintings of her collection to organise a temporary exhibition each year. The exhibition wants to show the quality and innovation of Catalan painting, and what Catalan authors were doing in similar times as their international peers. The 53 paintings will set a dialogue between Catalan and international authors, reviewing through the light the relationship between people and landscape from 1870 to 1970, as the exhibition curator, Pilar Giró, explained.

The exhibition\u2019s master works are two paintings from Paul Gauguin and Ramon Casas; \u2018Les liles\u2019 by Gauguin and \u2018Interior a l\u2019aire lliure\u2019 by Casas. Giró explained that the exhibition is divided into three parts: natural landscapes until the end of the 19th century, impressionism spaces and lastly \u201Cdream spaces, modernity visions\u201D.

Some of the Catalan authors on display are Anglada Camarasa, Ramon Casas, Marià Fortuny, Joan Llimona, Ramón Martí i Alsina, Eliseu Meifren, Isidre Nonell, Perejaume, Ramon Pichot, Antoni Tàpies, Modest Cuixart and Ràfols Casamada. Some of the international authors on show are Paul Gauguin, Theodore Rousseau, Paul Delvaux, Ernst W. Nay, Piere Bonnard, Richard Estes, Sanford R. Grifford, Charles-François Daubigny, Alberto Pasini, Robert Salmon and Maurice de Vlaminck.

Carmen Thyssen said that she is very satisfied with the first exhibition\u2019s results. Sant Feliu\u2019s Mayor, Joan Alfons Albó, explained that renovating the space and installing the security measures represented a \u20AC385,000 investment. Producing the exhibition represented \u20AC345,000 of additional budget. \u201CA third of this budget has been spent on security\u201D to bring the paintings to Sant Feliu de Guíxols. The organisers expect that during the three months the exhibition will be on display, 30,000 people will visit it.


  • Carmen Thyssen in front of two of the exhibition's paintings (by M. López)

  • Carmen Thyssen in front of two of the exhibition's paintings (by M. López)