Moscow welcomes fresh art from Spain

An exhibition “Fiction and Reality” in Spanish contemporary art is now on display at Moscow’s Museum of Modern Art. The collection from the Patio Herreriano Museum came to the Russian capital as part the initiatives for the Year of Spain in Russia.

The relatively young Patio Herreriano Museum has united the interests of the state authorities and the business community in one place. Spanish collectors with a history of interest in contemporary art joined forces with the country’s government and created a new platform for art. The state provided a venue – one of the Renaissance cloisters of the old San Benito monastery in the country’s northwest. Businessmen provided the artwork.

The collection of art gives an overall view of the development of the main artists and artistic trends in Spanish art in the 20th and 21st centuries. Begun in 1987, now the collection includes almost 1,000 works by artists such as Esteban Vicente, Eduardo Chillida, Miquel Barceló and Antoni Tapies. The collection of paintings, sculptures, installations, video art and photography is considered the largest and most representative in the country. 

Curator María de Corral, who co-directed the 2005 Venice Biennale, selected works created after the year 2000 for the display in Moscow. She explained her choice with a desire to show art that is still “unclassified” – art that hasn’t been labeled yet because it is still too young. However, she believes that the works brought for “Fiction and Reality” display “possess sufficient potential to be understood outside of [Spain].”

The first exhibition room presents photography. Almost all works feature people. In the other room, the works feature new media technologies to show how artists use new developments ad combine them with traditional painting. The final chapter is dedicated to video art, as this medium has in fact become the main stream of contemporary art. Installations, graphic art and various other art objects occupy the rest of the displace space.

The exhibition is running through May 9 at the Moscow Museum of Modern Art on Gogolevsky Boulevard.

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