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03 February 2022

Fundación ARCO grants the “A” Awards for Collecting on its 26th edition

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Francesca Thyssen-Bornemisza, founder of TBA21; Colección cmb – coleção moraes-barbosa; Colección Jimena Blázquez Abascal, and the Colección Eduardo Salazar and Juliana Hernández, are some of the award winners on this occasion.

Fundación ARCO, with the backing of IFEMA MADRID, has granted the “A” Awards for Collecting which this year distinguish four categories: Francesca Thyssen-Bornemisza, founder of TBA21 -International Collection and Philanthropy Award -; Colección cmb – coleção moraes-barbosa -Private Latin American Collection-; Jimena Blázquez Abascal -Private National Collection and Foundation - and Eduardo Salazar and Juliana Hernández -Young Collection-.

On this twenty-sixth edition, Fundación ARCO has granted these awards to distinguish the artistic value of the works assembled by collectors and institutions, in addition to their work in support of promoting contemporary art.

The awards ceremony will take place on Tuesday, February 22nd at the Círculo de Bellas Artes de Madrid and will be followed by the traditional Fundación ARCO dinner, with the collaboration of Cartier, aimed at raising funds for the acquisition of works at ARCOmadrid 2022 for its collection, currently housed in CA2M Centro de Arte Dos de Mayo de la Comunidad de Madrid.

Award-winners 2022

Francesca Thyssen-Bornemisza, founder of TBA21 | International Collection and Philanthropy Award

In the words of the president of TBA21, Francesca Thyssen-Bornemisza, "collecting consists of enabling something that captures your attention to become something you feel to be yours and in the end you inevitably find yourself helping the artist take that very important next step ".

Founded in 2002, TBA21 represents the fourth generation of the Thyssen family’s commitment to the arts and public service. The TBA21 Foundation, based in Madrid and Vienna, stewards the TBA21 Collection and its outreach activities, which include exhibitions, public programming and partnerships with other cultural institutions.

The collection has been forged and moulded through the long-standing collaborations between Francesca Thyssen-Bornemisza and the curators and artists involved in the numerous commissions of works, relationships woven by a process of mutual support, profound shared trust and continuous dialogue. These productions are processes that commit the collector from their very genesis, in spite of uncertain outcomes and they have formed an integral part of the foundation methodology, where the dynamic between the collector and the artists has been radically reworked. With over one hundred commissions to date, TBA21 may possibly be the most influential foundation involved in commissioning contemporary art.

cmb – coleção moraes-barbosa | Private Latin American Collection

Since 1999, Pedro Barbosa and Patricia Moraes have acquired works of conceptual art produced in different mediums. A significant section of their collection is made up of ephemeral art from the 60s and 70s and works of conceptual art from the same period.

In the last 20 years, the moraes-barbosa collection has incorporated a considerable amount of conceptual art, in numerous formats and of various origins. It was created not only to bring works together but to reflect the changes and fluctuations of the art world. Over this time, it has become clear that the collection alone could not capture the contemporary art dimension, frequently in connection and collaboration with other forms of art such as dance, performance, experimental music and both visual and sound poetry. This is why the moraes-barbosa archive was created 8 ears ago, not only to house, but also to foster the creation of content and the critical texts that best reflect the current contemporary art situation as a dynamic, interrelated and often unclassifiable field.

Jimena Blázquez Abascal | Private National Collection and Foundation

In the year 2000, Jimena Blázquez focused her professional efforts on creating the Fundación NMAC (Montenmedio Art contemporáneo), in Cadiz. Right now, the Fundación is immersed in the production of site-specific works, providing a contemporary creation platform with grants and residencies open to the public that is a pioneer in Europe within the Association of Open-Air Museums. Parallel to her dedication to this institution, she has also been a Curator at PS1- MoMA, and a member of the Scientific Committee for the Mudam Collection in Luxembourg. In 2009, she was appointed Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum for her commitment to the diffusion of culture and education as a basic tool for dialogue between civilizations. Her collection and passion for culture is one more dimension of her commitment to Contemporary Art.

The Jimena Blázquez Abascal collection is characterised by its engagement and commitment to international artists of its generation. From the outset, it has veered towards the creative and intellectual process of the artists, inviting them to produce works, thus staying in direct contact with contemporary artistic creation. The engagement of artists in the study and analysis of the social, geographic, political and cultural context is one of the cornerstones of both Fundación Montenmedio and the works comprising the private collection of Jimena Blázquez. Through the works of Maurizio Cattelan, Shen Yuan, Adel Abdessemed, Gunilla Bandolin, Mirian Cahn, Daniel Steegmann Mangranée, Shannon Bool, Pascale Martin Tayou, Vivien Sutter, Alvaro Barrington, Marina Abramovic, Gabriel Chaile, Cristina Lucas, Jacobo Castellano, Maja Bajevic, Pierre Huyghe, James Turrell, among many others, the collection creates a story-telling of questions and answers that challenge the reality we live in, establishing a plot based on the significance of all the works and all the lines contained in it.

Eduardo Salazar and Juliana Hernández | Young Collection

Eduardo Salazar-Yusti and Juliana Hernández together form a collector couple with a unique mix of aesthetic intuition and conceptual depth, of observations of the body as an object and as an artistic medium, with a special interest in the art that makes an echo in the times we live in and the realities we need to understand and transform.

The first piece of the Salazar Hernández collection was acquired in 2004, and over the first decade the collection focused mainly on works by contemporary Colombian artists working fundamentally in painting and drawing. In 2014, the ambition and dynamic of the collection intensified through the circuit of international fairs and the expansion of the collection’s dialogue to include other Latin American and European artists.

The essence of the collection began with a reflection on political art, power relations, artistic resistance to a cynical and superficial life, and ended up converging on the human body. Through movements, eras, materials, mediums and styles, the elements of the body and the human figure become the collection’s leitmotiv. With pieces by Latin American and European artists predominantly from the 21st and turn of the 20th centuries, it is an intensely contemporary collection. Parallel to the collection, a photography archive and collection has been built over time, reflecting the memory of the cultural movements that have arisen in Latin America and the dialogues between art, literature, photography and culture produced there.