The Ministry of Culture and Sport invested 6.62 million euros in the acquisition of cultural assets for public collections in 2022

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The Ministry of Culture and Sport invested 6.62 million euros in the acquisition of cultural assets for public collections in 2022

The Ministry of Culture and Sport, through the General Directorate of Heritage and Fine Arts, invested a total of 6,620,286 euros in the acquisition of cultural assets for the State’s public collections in 2022, an increase of 11% over the previous year compared to the previous year , when investment doubled in 2020.

In the last financial year, the Ministry made purchases for 27 public cultural institutions: 10 directly managed state museums; 6 state museums and management transferred to autonomous communities; 5 State Archives, The Spanish Film Library, The National Library of Spain, The Prado National Museum, The National Art Center Reina Sofía, The National Heritage and The Naval Museum.

A total of more than 200 cultural assets have been included in the state collections, including paintings, sculptures, drawings, furniture, ceramics, documentary and bibliographic collections and contemporary artistic installations.

Increase in collections by area
Among the acquisitions for state museums, the investment by the Ministry of Culture and Sport to enrich the collections of centers whose management is entrusted to the Autonomous Communities stands out, amounting to almost 470,000 euros in 2022.

Among them, the sculpture “Head of the Veiled Emperor Augustus” stands out, acquired for the Museum of Mallorca for 250,000 euros. It is one of the most important Roman pieces found in the Balearic Islands. It comes from the Pollentia site and has been in a private collection since the 16th century.

The other acquisitions for transferred museums were the paintings “The Corpus Christi Procession in the Cathedral of Seville” by Joaquín Domínguez Bécquer for 30,000 euros and “The Three Ages of Man” by Carbone (17th century) for 10,000 euros by the Seville Museum of Fine Arts ; a fragment of an epigraphic tablet from the Roman Empire from AD 14 worth 17,700 euros for the Archaeological Museum of Seville; an oil painting by Cosme Algarra y Hurtado for €5,500 for the Albacete Museum; and the paintings “San Pablo” (17th century) and “San Andrés” by Sebastián Martínez, acquired for €18,267 and €30,000 respectively for the Museum of Jaén.

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Contemporary Arts 
In addition, the budget includes an investment of 1,299,568 euros in the purchase of contemporary art for the collection of the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía. Among them, Olga Sacharoff’s “Portrait of Otho Lloyd” stands out, which was purchased for 150,000 euros, as well as various works acquired during the ARCO fair from various domestic and foreign galleries.

A total of 1,378,638 euros was made available to the Prado Museum for the acquisition of paintings, engravings, drawings and sculptures. The most outstanding pieces include “Still Life with Blue and White Ceramic Bowl with Fruit” by Pedro de Camprobín for 280,000 euros; a pair of Andrés Deleito Vanitas for €300,000; four trompe l’oeils by Francisco Gallardo, purchased for 108,894 euros; or “Venus discovers Adonis dead”, worth 120,000 euros, a painting by the painter Diego Polo, extremely rare given the subject represented in the panorama of Spanish Baroque painting.

State Museums
As for the collections of the National Museums managed by the Ministry of Culture and Sports, this year included pieces as important as the hard stone tablet made in Rome at the end of the 16th or beginning of the 17th century, acquired for 120,000 euros for the National Museum of Decorative Arts; or the two created by the Zuloaga saga, a family of goldsmiths and gunsmiths who renewed metal art in the second half of the 19th century. Works by two of its most important members were acquired: an iron clock created by Plácido Zuloaga in 1863, bought for €350,000 for the National Museum of Decorative Arts; and a case of gold Damascus dueling pistols by Eusebio Zuloaga from 1856, valued at €150,000 for the Museum of Romanticism.

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The funds of this last museum have also been boosted by an interesting set of 19th-century photographic material, acquired for a total of 123,248 euros, which includes machines, viewers, projectors and everything necessary to create with this new technique, revolutionary to the society of the time.

In a different context and at a different time, but also in relation to photography, the incorporation of the fashion photo archive of José Manuel Ferrater into the collection of the Museo del Traje stands out, which contains around 200,000 positives, negatives, slides, vintage copies, polaroids and portfolios includes , hard drives and photos of various formats from the 20th and 21st centuries worth 200,000 euros.

Sorolla year
On the occasion of the celebrations of the 100th anniversary of Joaquín Sorolla’s death next year, the Sorolla Museum has expanded its collection with six new works by the Valencian artist: the watercolor “Playing the Guitar” and the paintings “Niña”, “Niña Cantora”. ‘, ‘The Slave and the Dove’, ‘The Sacrificer’ and ‘At the Inn’. The last three are currently part of the exhibition “Sorolla. Origins”, which focuses on the painter’s early years. In total, the Ministry has provided 492,138 euros for the acquisition of works by the Valencian painter.

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Documentary heritage recovered
Among the purchases of documentary and bibliographic heritage benefiting State Archives, the National Library of Spain and other institutions, the purchase of the Luis García Berlanga Archives for the National Film Library, worth 357,000 euros, stands out.

Also of particular importance is the acquisition of 37 medieval documents from the old Hospital del Rey de Burgos, now the seat of the University of Burgos, for the National Historical Archives. These documents, some of which were previously unknown, were plundered in 1808 by Napoleonic troops on their way through Burgos. The purchase through an auction house in Paris for an amount of 35,857 euros has now made it possible to recover it.

Dating from the 12th to the 16th centuries, the parchments contain the donations made to the Hospital del Rey de Burgos by various individuals and monarchs of Castile and León, diplomas of Kings Alfonso VIII, Queen Leonor Plantagenet, Fernando III, Alfonso XI, Pedro I Enrique II, Juan I and the Catholic Monarchs and Bulls of Pope Gregory IX. and Clement VIII.

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