|Antoni Tapies Foundation|
The Antoni Tapies Foundation is a museum and cultural research centre created in 1984 by the Catalan artist Antoni Tapies in order to explore and promote contemporary art. The museum opened its doors in June 1990, with a vast collection of Tapies works donated by the artist and his wife.
Alongside the permanent exhibition, the foundation organises temporary exhibitions, symposiums, lectures and film series in addition to publishing various publications. The interdisciplinary vision and the interaction between different learning areas intend to lead to a better understanding of contemporary art and culture.
The Antoni Tapies Foundation is located in one of the first modernist buildings of Barcelona, built between 1881 and 1885 by the great architect Lluis Domenech i Montaner, chairman of the Universal Exhibition of 1888. Originally, this building housed Montaner i Simon's print shop and publishing company. It has been rehabilitad by Roser Amado and Lluis Domenech Girbau. The features of its industrial-looking facade which combines typical vintage brick with contemporary steel and glass, representing the work by Tapies named "Cloud and Chair", made it one of the highlights of Barcelona, being declared historical monument in 1997.
In January 2008 the foundation began its architectural rehabilitation, which kept it closed for almost two years. The original idea was to comply with safety regulations, evacuation plans, and the needs of people with reduced mobility. In the end, the refurbishment realised by architect Iñaki Abalos went much further, and the museum gained some 600 square metres and greater access for the public.
One of the main additions in this new phase of the Foundation is the work 'Mitjó' (“Sock”) by Tapies; a sculpture of about three meters long, famous because of the controversy it created in 1991, when the Museo Nacional de Arte de Catalunya refused to place it at the museum´s Oval Room. Now the 'Mitjó' can be seen in the new garden terrace overlooking the inner courtyard of the Eixample.
The library is a special place within the Foundation. It has one of the largest modern art books collections in the world, including collections of pre-Columbian, African, and especially Asian culture. It also houses the most complete archive on the works by Tapies.
Antoni Tapies i Puig was born in Barcelona on 13 December 1923. He is a painter and sculptor considered to be one of most significant informal artists of the twentieth century in Spain.
Raised in a bourgeois family involved in Catalan politics, he grew up in an environment that encouraged his interest in literature. He first went to law school, but in 1945 he decided to quit and become a full-time painter.
In the beginning he was close to the surrealistic movement, but he soon changes his style to become one of the greatest exponents of the informalist art. His work strikes as being created from recycled materials such as paper and strings. In the seventies, influenced by pop-art, he starts using pieces of furniture and other elements to inject more power into his works.
Tapies has exhibited in the major museums worldwide and has won awards, most notably the Prince of Asturias Award in 1990.
Fundación Antoni Tàpies