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.
The exhibition entitled El surrealismo en España (Surrealism in Spain) takes a look back at the output in Spain, between 1925 and the Civil War (1936-1939), of almost fifty artists. The period is defined by, or evolves alongside, French Surrealism. Lucía García de Carpi, the exhibit's joint curator with Josefina Alix, points to two factors that cause so-called Spanish Surrealism to gain so much importance. The first being that within the revival of avant-garde art, the artists start to take an active interest in what is being disseminated by the Surrealists in Paris, going beyond the mere receptive nature of European movements. The second involves an heterogeneous style in Spain in terms of language and conception. Their theoretical, literary, exhibiting and artistic approaches bring at least four locations into the spotlight: Madrid (the residency of students and “Telluric” Surrealists Alberto Sánchez and Benjamín Palencia), Catalunya (the ADLAN Group and Logicofobista Group), Tenerife (the setting for Gaceta del Arte, Óscar Domínguez and the International Surrealist Exhibition organisation in 1935) and Zaragoza (Tomas Seral y Casas and Alfonso Buñuel).
When cinema is understood as a synonym of movement, a homage to Luis Buñuel (Calanda, Teruel 1900 - Mexico City, 1983) inside a museum - where static work is the overriding medium - can be seen as a “contradictory” exhibition, as the curator, Yasha David, puts it. With this in mind, the spaces of the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía have been set up to create a “subliminal state” resembling the stamp Buñuel gives to his films.
This exhibition provides an overview of Federico Garcia Lorca’s (Fuente Vaqueros, 1898 - Granada, 1936) personal and artistic biography. His cities, friends, success and the poet’s loneliness are the four main topics used to display his public and private life. An extensive correspondence and personal documents are featured in the exhibition, as well as photographs, books and manuscripts. The exhibition is completed with the works of contemporary artists who share artistic and aesthetic concerns over his career. Among these are the most outstanding representatives of Madrid’s artistic avant-garde, such as Benjamín Palencia, Rafael Barradas, Gregorio Prieto, José Moreno Villa, Adriano del Valle and José Bergamin.
Despite his short career (four years) Nicholas de Lekuona (Ordizia, 1913 - Frúniz, 1937) is known for a prolific artistic production to which the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía dedicates this exhibition.
The exhibition Huellas Dalinianas reflects Salvador Dalí’s (Figueras, 1904-1989) influence on the Spanish avant-garde, from 1929 until after the Civil War. This exhibition is part of the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía’s programme celebrating the centenary of the birth of Catalan artist, which is accompanied by another almost simultaneous exhibition at the Museum, Dalí. cultura de masas.
Coinciding with the festival of photography PHotoEspaña 2007, the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía proposes a selective journey through photographs from its Collection. The selection of photographs shown in five different spaces and that have been established according to a reflexive link between the subjective perception of the spectator and the return of the look in the image.