List of selected artworks. Maps for the tour in the museum

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  • March 3 - April 19, 1992

    The Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía presents one of the most preeminent Venezuelan artists, whose work and character are determined by the construction of an artistic identity based on the notion of the “noble savage”, in the first half of the century, Armando Reverón (Caracas, 1889-1954). Once he completes his academic education, Reverón travels to Barcelona and Madrid, in 1911, and a few years later to Paris, where his interest is not in the transgression of language and the academic representation of the Cubist avant-garde, but in retracing Post-impressionism and landscape painting based on principles of light. Upon returning to Caracas his alienation from artistic circles results in his voluntary withdrawal to the margins of civic and social centres and from 1923 onwards his farm-studio in Macuto becomes the setting for his painting.

  • Exhibition view. Richard Serra, 1992
    January 28 - March 29, 1992

    In Richard Serra (San Francisco, 1939), twentieth century sculpture has one of the craftsman behind the revival of its innate values: weight, mass, monumentality, a desire for permanence, who through his sculptural expression incites the active consideration of the viewer and formulates a necessary relationship between sculpture and space. Although Serra emerges on the New York art scene at the end of the sixties as a Minimalist artist alongside Carl André and Sol Lewitt, he soon expresses his desire to: “Escape from the theory of good form (and the opposing figure-ground it is based on)”, as the art critic and historian, Yves-Alain Bois, indicates. His first works display an artistic interest in the possibilities raw and unused materials (rubber, neon, leather, lead), which can be appreciated in the piece Belts (1966-1967). The conception and arrangement of these works highlight the rejection of idealised sculptural practice placed on a pedestal (involving a static sculpture with one unique central viewpoint), explored further in his later work which displays an intrinsic transitive nature, as is the case in the sculpture Walzstrasse I (1983). Its main aim is to consider the redefinition of the space it is located in and participate in the viewer's spacial experience, leading them to compare proportions.

  • Exhibition view. Robert Gober, 1992
    14 january, 1992 - 08 march, 1992

    Robert Gober (Wallingford, Connecticut, 1954) stands out for his vindication of radical subjectivity at a time when, by and large, artistic expression distils strategies of modern and post-modern thought on formal and theoretical problems and is in line with Neo-expressionist pictorial practice. His work also has strong autobiographical undertones, favouring emotion over concept. Catherine David, the exhibition's curator, talks about how his artistic discourse is critical without ascribing to the, “New York simulationalism movement of 'critique'”, instead: “it invites a new interpretation of North American art over the last thirty years, to reconsider the rejection and unawareness of formalism, and the recognition (…) of diversity in the complex cultural influences and heritage developed by different generations of artists in Surrealism and the work of Marcel Duchamp.”

  • Exhibition view. Manuel Millares, 1992
    09 january, 1992 - 16 march, 1992

    In the year that marks the twentieth anniversary of the disappearance of Manolo Millares (Las Palmas de Gran Canarias, 1926 - Madrid, 1972), this exhibition takes a look back at the painter's brief, but intense, career. Millares played an important role in revamping artistic languages in Spain during the fifties and sixties, both as part of the Canary Island group LADAC (the Archers of Contemporary Art), founded in 1950, and with his participation in the creation of the El Paso group (1957-1960).

  • Liubov Popova. Painterly Architectonic (Still Life: Instruments), 1915. Oil on canvas. Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid
    18 december, 1991 - 17 february, 1992

    There was constant desire to develop a new and absolute artistic language throughout the different art movements of the early twentieth century, especially those which end up linked to political projects. The principles of universality and overcoming mimetic art which these avant-garde trends are governed by, suppose an experimental review of the actual artistic components. In the Russian art scene of the first quarter of the century Liubov Popova (Ivanovskoe, Russia, 1889 - Moscow, 1924) stands out because of her dedication to the pursuit of an artistic vocabulary that would respond to the principles of Constructivism from the pictorial scene. She understood that pictorial construction was a precursor to real three-dimensional construction. The exhibition aims to highlight Popova as an artist-painter and not as an artist-engineer, posture and attitude that most of her peers adopt, according to the new ideal of post-revolutionary Soviet society. Despite this, as noted Magdalena Davroski, curator of the exhibition: "components of her concept of "construction" are essentially the traditional tools of every artist, but she interprets them as real materials."

  • Exhibition view. Confrontaciones. Arte último británico y español, 1991
    11 december, 1991 - 18 february, 1992

    The term that lends its name to this exhibition is used to bring the work of sixteen British and Spanish artists together in one unique space, selected for this third instalment of Confrontaciones (Comparisons). The aim is the positive and open comparison in art practices, conducted in different geographical locations by authors from the same generation. On one side, the specifics of the recent artistic past in each country (in Spain's case, the eighties is defined for the most part by pictorial practice) are reflected in this collection of work whereby artists share different aspects, attitudes and processes that are used to depict a critical dimension in their pieces. As vindicated by the selected works on display, and asserted by the art critic Félix Guisasola, at the beginning of this decade: “A trend towards objectualisation (sculpture, installation, objects) substantiates a development in the approach of art genres and bears witness to a change in the prominence of the artist (from expressionist gestures and attitudes to the autobiography or total concealment of the artist behind the opacity of the works).”

  • Exhibition view. Robert Therrien, 1991
    27 november, 1991 - 24 february, 1992

    This exhibition, made up of over sixty works by Robert Therrien (Chicago, 1947), opens the possibility of a more in-depth look at the artistic discourse of a young North American artist whose work has only recently started to receive international recognition, despite his career beginning at the end of the sixties. Therrien's art can be found, voluntarily, somewhere between painting and sculpture, blurring the boundaries of art practices; it recognises the simplicity of process, of formal references and the resulting work. Yet the artist eludes any classification and does not ascribe to current waves of contemporary art such as Post-minimalism.

  • 07 october, 1991 - 02 december, 1991

    The work of Nicolas de Staël (Saint Petersbourg, Russia, 1913/1914 - Antibes, France, 1955) typifies another possible route for post-war art - the pleasure of painting. In France after the Second World War painting is not only confined to vindicating its role as a medium for representing the experience of horror and human barbarity, as demonstrated by Alfred Otto Wols, Jean Fautrier and Jean Dubuffet, whose works mark a destructive reaction in contrast to European artistic and cultural traditions. de Staël goes beyond the division of war by tracing his own genealogy in avant-garde figures such as César Domela, Hans Arp, Henri Laurens and, primarily, Georges Braque and his compatriot, André Lanskoy. His painting cannot be defined as abstract, but drifts more between the experience and exploration of reality and is able to formulate a new figuration by arriving at the essence of forms through analysis. Over the space of ten years, de Staël's career starts with an initial admiration of the leading figures in the history of European painting (Tiziano Vecellio, El Greco, Jacopo Bellini, Andrea Mantegna, Jan Vermeer, Frans Hals, Rembrandt, Eugène Delacroix), and ends with the persistent questioning of the foundations of modern painting via Paul Cézanne and Vincent Van Gogh.

  • Salvador Dalí. Visage du Grand Masturbateur (Face of the Great Masturbator), 1929. Painting. Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía Collection, Madrid
    01 october, 1991 - 02 december, 1991

    The surrealist movement, definitely visible and theoretically debated with the publication of the Manifeste du Surréalisme (1924), written by André Breton (Tinchebray, France, 1896 - Paris, 1966) is a cosmology organised by and about Breton himself. His revolutionary pretensions, which are visible in all his publications, expositions and determinations, are understood as the will of general subversion (through action) in all areas of daily life, starting from poetry and art and moving to ethics, religion and politics. Thus, Surrealism is not only an artistic and literary expression, but a stance against the traditional values of culture and the bourgeois society and against realism in art. He supports the idea of an inner model in all creative acts, of otherness, absolute automatism (applied to poetic and artistic practice) as well as the adoption of meta-artistic methods that come from psychoanalysis, such as hypnosis, which allow the release of human consciousness and a return to a primitive and primordial state of thought.

  • Jorge Rueda. Pepino (Cucumber), 1975. Photography. Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía Collection, Madrid
    19 september, 1991 - 22 december, 1991

    The exhibition Cuatro direcciones. Fotografía contemporánea española. 1970-1990 contains a dual purpose. For one, it provides an overview of the names that have made up the history and practice of Spanish photography over the last twenty years, and secondly, it takes the first step towards creating a documented base which will be useful in the future for expanding its study and knowledge. The curator of the exhibition, Manuel Santos, has had the support of an international committee of experts in the selection of the photographers. Four areas or lines of work have been established for the presentation, they address the conceptual and stylistic differences of the fifty artists that are participating in the exhibition. These are: 1) "Reflection and concept", which shows the use of conceptual ideas and imagery of surrealist heritage, 2) "Dream and suggestion", where the authors develop concepts of insight and emotion, 3) "Documentary tradition" which comes from the natural order of life, focusing on social, cultural and political aspects and which sometimes refers to photojournalism and documentary photography, 4) "Means processes", in which the artists explore and push photographic means and materials to their limits, allowing them to develop a new image language.

  • Julian Schnabel. Epitafio (L.S.J.T) (Panel tumba V), 1989. Sculpture. Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía Collection, Madrid
    16 september, 1991 - 31 october, 1991

    The Palacio de Velázquez is the venue for the exhibition organised by Grupo 16 in collaboration with the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía. El Salón de los 16 is an initiative by the editorial group to promote the dissemination of Contemporary Art. In its first editions this annual conference focuses on bringing together the work of new generations of artists from Madrid though, as time moves on, the El Salón de los 16 broadens its plan to incorporate the whole of Spain. This, the eleventh exhibition, displays foreign artists' work alongside preeminent figures in Spanish art in what is considered an overview of the best exhibitions from 1990-1991.

  • Pablo Picasso. Mujer en azul, 1901. Painting. Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía Collection, Madrid
    5 september - 10 november, 1991

    The exhibition Picasso, Miró, Dalí and the Origins of Contemporary Art in Spain, 1900-1936 seeks to articulate Spanish artistic production (in several and well-known cases produced outside Spain) based on the concept of "Art Nouveau". Eugenio Carmona, curator of this exhibition gives an instrumental value to this concept and explains it as a principle that underlies much of the art that is performed during the first decades of the twentieth century. In this type of art there is evidence of a desire for a renewal of artistic languages, the paradigm of which is identified by the Spanish artists in contemporary European trends. From this perspective, the exhibition proposes a debate with Spanish art in tune with the names and aesthetic and theoretical avant-garde ideas, gathered under the umbrella of Modernism, while at the same time embedded in them. In this way, Spanish artists that have as reference the various "-isms" (Cubism, Futurism, Ultraism (Ultraísmo), Surrealism and Realism) participate in the international dimension of avant-garde art. Still, as the curator points out, "Art Nouveau" was not the only option Spanish art had in the period between 1900 and 1936.

  • Joaquín Torres García. Objeto plástico. Forma 140 (Plastic Object. Shape 140), 1929. Sculpture. Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía Collection, Madrid
    18 june, 1991 - 21 august, 1991

    This exhibition devoted to the painter Joaquín Torres-García (Montevideo, 1874-1949) aims to present his work chronologically throughout his career and identify his logic according to his theoretical and aesthetic discourse. The objective is to highlight how the principles of tradition, construction and universality are the constants on which the work of Uruguayan are based throughout his artistic journey, which extends for the whole of the first half of the twentieth century. The words of Tomas Llorens, curator of the exhibition, referring to Torres-Garcia’s work summarises the purpose of the exhibition: "[his work] is inseparable from the sharpness and coherence of the views he defended as an artist."

  • Exhibition view. La Escuela del Sur. El taller Torres-García y su legado, 1991
    18 june, 1991 - 12 august, 1991

    The constructive universalism project, foundations to Joaquín Torres-García’s (Montevideo, 1874-1949) artistic and theoretical productions reaches its peak when the artist returns from Paris to his hometown in 1934 and the following year organises the Constructive Art Association (1935-1939), preceding the Torres-Garcia Workshop (1943-1962). El Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía joins both ideas with these two extensive exhibitions: Torres-Garcia’s career and his artistic legacy, the latter exhibited under the title La Escuela del Sur. El taller de Torres-García y su legado. Established in Montevideo, Torres-Garcia implements the idea of organising a workshop which converges, showing his artistic equality, aesthetic and theoretical, principles of pre-Columbian art with those of avant-garde abstract art, the development of which he had been instrumental in as a member of the group Cercle et Carré.

  • Gustavo Torner. Ocre-Chatarra oxidada, 1961-62. Painting. Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía Collection, Madrid
    28 may, 1991 - 28 july, 1991

    The retrospective exhibition dedicated to Gustavo Torner (Cuenca, 1925) aims to highlight the multifaceted character of one of the most outstanding Spanish artists living in the second half of the twentieth century. Torner joins the group called Cuenca, which emerges in the fifties and is close to artists from the group El Paso, he exemplifies the possibility of an art that will never abandon references to the real world as a reason and rationale, from a seemingly abstract visual vocabulary. The compiled works include the various registers and techniques used by Torner: painting, sculpture, collage, drawing, monotypes and bibliophile collections, added to which are fourteen video projections over some of his work.

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