ARTISTIC, HISTORICAL AND CULTURAL HERITAGE
Commited to cultural development
Patronage, supporting new forms of artistic expression and the restoration of cultural heritage are the main channels through which the Iberdrola group manifests its commitment to culture. The company is pursuing this commitment in a sustainable way by supporting initiatives and programmes oriented towards conserving and promoting cultural heritage, and through actions that foster and contribute to the dissemination of the creative force of contemporary culture.
Iberdrola expresses its support for culture, art and society through:
- Projects for restoration and lighting of historic buildings
- Exhibitions organized in collaboration with different centers
- The Iberdrola art collection
The Guggenheim Bilbao Museum hosted the exhibition Alberto Giacometti. A Retrospective until 24 February 2019, dedicated to one of the most influential artists of the twentieth century and one of the leading sculptors in history.
Alberto Giacometti, 1951.
Organised by the Guggenheim Bilbao Museum and the Giacometti Foundation in Paris and sponsored by Iberdrola, the exhibition brought together more than 200 sculptures, paintings and drawings that synthesise more than four decades of the brilliant Swiss artist's career. From his first works linked to Cubism and Surrealism to his stylised and rugged multi-scale figures associated with a more mature stage.
Alberto Giacometti (1901-1966) always impregnated his creations with great depth and reflection. The human figure is one of his main themes and many of his works were inspired by the people around him, especially his brother Diego, his wife Annette, his friends and his lovers.
Women of Venice (1956).
On the occasion of the opening of the exhibition and coinciding with the 21st anniversary of the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Iberdrola provided free admission to the museum on 20 and 21 October. Anyone who visited the venue that weekend could enjoy the new exhibition and other important exhibitions free of charge: Van Gogh to Picasso: The Thannhauser Legacy; Joana Vasconcelos: I'm your mirror; Shadow play, by Javier Téllez; and Masterpieces from the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao Collection.
The Museo del Prado and Iberdrola, which have been collaborating since 2010, renewed their cooperation agreement in June 2018. Under the new agreement, the company is committed to supporting the conservation and restoration programs developed by the institution, and maintaining the three annual grants for young restorers which it has been awarding since 2011, and to which is now added an international grant. Specifically, it will allocate a total of 1.2 million euros, which will be split into annual payments of 300,000 euros during the first four years.
Iberdrola awards annual grants so that young restorers can become trained at the Museo del Prado Workshop. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
As part of that collaboration, Iberdrola has already participated in various projects, such as the restoration for use as an exhibition space of the entire second floor of the north side of the Villanueva Building. This action has enabled the rearrangement of the Prado collection, favouring a continuous and more accessible tour. In addition, eight new rooms of 17th-century Flemish and Dutch paintings, featuring fundamental works by Rubens, Rembrandt, Jan Brueghel, Clara Peeters, David Teniers, Rembrandt, Salomon Bray and Gabriël Metsu, have been opened to the public.
Additionally, as a member and Protector of the Prado Museum Restoration Program, the company has collaborated in the restoration of The Fountain of Grace, one of the institution's most fascinating and enigmatic Flemish panels.
The piece, which was painted in the Netherlands in an environment closely linked to Jan Van Eyck's workshop, has undergone a process lasting 18 months to remove the opaque and yellowish varnish that covered the painting. Space and depth have thus been recovered, as have the dark linear outline of the details and the peculiar way of applying the glazes, in which transparency is achieved not by the use of more medium in the painting but by the overlapping of opaque layers.
While aesthetics was one of the goals, the restoration also addressed historical and iconographic dimensions, as well as key aspects of the panel's pictorial style, to complete the research. The conclusions of this detailed study could have been seen, along with the restored piece, until 27 January 2019 in an exhibition sponsored by Iberdrola.
'The Fountain of Grace', before and after the restoration process. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
Furthermore, the company has collaborated in the restoration works of three of the paintings selected for the In lapide depictum exhibition. Italian painting on stone, 1530-1555, which could be visited since 17 April until 5 August 2018.
These most notably include the Santo Entierro of the Bassano workshop, restored by Alicia Peral, who has recovered the volume of each figure and its exact position in the composition, as well as the depth of the landscape. The restoration has also revealed touches of gold with which the author achieves the effect of vibrating light, in contrast to the dark and deep surface of the slate support.
'In lapide depictum. Italian painting on stone, 1530-1555', opened to the public from 17 April to 5 August 2018, at the Museo del Prado in Madrid. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
The Museo del Prado has also restored, with Iberdrola's help, three important religious works from the Sevillian baroque painter Antonio María Esquivel: The Fall of Lucifer, Christ the Saviour and The Virgin and Child. Only the first of them had been displayed for a very short time, in the Casón del Buen Retiro, while the other two are unpublished.
'The Fall of Lucifer', 'Christ the Saviour' and 'The Virgin and Child', by Antonio María Esquivel.
The company has also sponsored the restoration of The Triumph of Death by Pieter Bruegel the Elder, one of only two pieces by the artist being conserved in Spain. The restoration work, which was carried out by María Antonia López de Asiain and José de la Fuente, has enabled the recovery of the painting's structural stability, true colouring, composition and technique, recovering the clarity in the foregrounds.
Presentation of 'The Triumph of Death' by Pieter Bruegel the Elder after the restoration process. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
BICENTENARY OF THE PRADO
The company has also agreed to support the exhibition The Museo del Prado in the streets, which will be carried out as part of the Extraordinary Program to commemorate the Bicentenary of the Museum. For this, Iberdrola will contribute 180,000 euros to develop this outdoor photographic exhibition that will cover, during 2018 and 2019, various locations throughout Spain.
For the third year running Iberdrola and the Salamanca Municipal Council have organised a new edition of the Luz y Vanguardias (Light and Avant-Garde Art) Festival, one of the key events on the international artistic use of light calendar, which exhibits and provides exposure for the works of artists who use light as a raw material and express themselves through works that use the plastic arts, video, projections and installation to create their pieces.
CEO of Iberdrola España Ángeles Santamaría and Salamanca mayor Alfonso Fernández Mañueco have officially opened the third Luz y Vanguardias Festival. Santamaría said what a delight it is to witness the special connections that form between Salamanca's history and heritage and avant-garde art during the festival in the city.
Presentation of the Salamanca Luz y Vanguardia Festival's third edition, in the Plaza Mayor of the city. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
From 14 to 17 June, 2018, locals and visitors were able to stroll around the streets and enjoy the light art in and on some of the city's most emblematic monuments and spaces in a spectacle that is free of charge and open to all. Luz y Vanguardias had four sections:
- The curated artists section. The Scottish artist living in Finland, Charles Sandison, was presenting his work on the exterior of the New Cathedral; the Hispano-Mexican designer Darya von Berner transformed the façade of the University of Salamanca in the Patio de Escuelas, the Valladolid artist Eugenio Ampudia, who received an award at the last edition of ARCO, displayed his creation on the Plateresque architecture of the Convent of San Esteban, while a new space for the festival, the recently restored Palacio de Monterrey, served as the canvas for the ground-breaking Cantabrian artist Juan López.
- The international video mapping competition in which independent artists, groups and specialist studios competed against each other. The façade of the Town Hall, in the city's iconic Plaza Mayor (Main Square), formed once again the backdrop for this international competition. The first prize of 15,000 euros was for the Spanish studio VideomappingPro. This year the Salamanca Municipal Council was also awarding a special prize of 5,000 euros on the occasion of the 800th anniversary of the Universidad de Salamanca (Salamanca University). The winner was the Ruman artist Vali Chincisan, thanks to his work Urban Tree. As the winner of the prize of the public, the audience chose the work R-Evolution by the Mexican artist Jesús Gutiérrez Mercado.
- The young talents exhibition for students from Salamanca's two universities. Ever since it was first held, the Luz y Vanguardias Festival has expressly set out to promote the work being done by the young creators who are learning their crafts at the Universidad de Salamanca (USAL) and the Universidad Pontificia de Salamanca (UPSA). Throughout the year, Luz y Vanguardias was in contact with the lecturers of both universities, organised workshops and reserved the emblematic Casa de las Conchas to enable the creatives from both institutions to exhibit their works for the first time before the general public and alongside established artists in this unique and remarkable building.
- The +Luz section with a parallel programme offered by five of the city's art venues. Luz y Vanguardias was once again showing its commitment to incorporating the city's traditional and alternative art venues into the festival. The four venues that took part in 2017 were back for more (the DA2 contemporary art centre, the Adora Calvo Gallery, the multidisciplinary venue Espacio Nuca, and the La Salchichería cultural space) and they was joined for the first time by the Fundación Venancio Blanco, which is dedicated to the brilliant, recently deceased sculptor from Salamanca.
'Sorolla and fashion' exhibition. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
The exhibition was hosted at both museums at the same time and in a complementary manner, portraying the presence of fashion in Joaquín Sorolla's work. The exhibition made up of seventy paintings from different museums and private national and international collections — some of which had never been exhibited to the public — in addition to dresses and accessories from the period.
Under the awning, on the Beach at Zarauz, 1910. Joaquín Sorolla.
Iberdrola has inaugurated a new ornamental lighting scheme in the Royal Pantheon of the Collegiate Church of Saint Isidore of Leon, after carrying out an extensive renovation in accordance with the needs and relevance of this 11th-century chapel.
The renovation, which was sustained by an investment of 87,000 euros, was made possible by the collaborative agreement between Iberdrola and the Council of the Collegiate Church of Saint Isidore of Leon in June 2017 with the goal of designing and executing an ornamental lighting project in this chapel to highlight the excellence of its cultural heritage.
From left to right: the General Director of Heritage for the Government of Castilla y León, Enrique Saiz; the mayor of León, Antonio Silván; the Abbot-President of the Council of Saint Isidore, Francisco Rodríguez Llamazares, and the Director of the Iberdrola España Foundation, Ramón Castresana.
To bring this project to fruition the company used LED projectors with over 98% colour rendering, which makes it possible to achieve full colour fidelity at a colour temperature very similar to that of sunlight. The benefits of LED technology have also been fully utilised, as this kind of lighting is kinder to the paintings as it emits no infrared or ultraviolet light.
The design of the ornamental lighting of the domes uses interlaced beams of light to ensure perfect uniformity and avoid high light concentration at the source of the beams, thus lessening light exposure to the paintings.
Lastly, three natural light sensors were installed to automatically adjust the light level in the Royal Pantheon's interior.
During the week prior to the Annual General Shareholders Meeting, from 5th to 13th April 2018, the Spanish artist Eugenio Ampudia transformed the Iberdrola Tower into a rainstick (pau de chuva). This is an artistic presentation with a very powerful technological and ecological character combining climate data of Bilbao and Brasilia.
'Pau de Chuva', by Eugenio Ampudia.
The work of art reflected pulses of light marked by a combination of temperature, atmospheric pressure, environmental humidity and wind strength data of the two cities.
AREAS OF ACTION
BILL VIOLA: RETROSPECTIVE
After over a decade, artist and video art pioneer Bill Viola's artwork (New York, 1951) returned to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Bilbao between June 30th until November 9th 2017 with a complete tour of his career.
From left to right: Kira Perov, Director of the Bill Viola Studio; Juan Ignacio Vidarte, General Director of the Guggenheim; Bill Viola, artist; Rafael Orbegozo, Head of the Chairman's Office of Iberdrola and Lucía Agirre, Commissioner. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
The retrospective was also a glimpse into the evolution of Viola's work over the course of 40 years and how his language has transformed in keeping with the revolutionary developments in technology and audiovisual techniques, advances that he has been incorporating progressively to his creative productions.
Displayed on the 25th floor of the corporate headquarters, the Recovered Memories exhibition offered its audience some insight into the little known contribution made by the Spanish royal family to the creation of the United States of America.
Last May 5 2017, HRM King Felipe visited the exhibition located in Iberdrola Tower accompanied by Unai Rementería, Deputy General of Biscay; Javier de Andrés, Government Representative in the Basque Country; Juan María Aburto, Mayor of Bilbao; Ana Otadui, President of the General Assembly of Biscay and the Chairman of Iberdrola, Ignacio Galán.
It featured a selection of over 200 pieces of artwork, documents, maps, costumes, miniatures and reproductions, and paid special attention to the contribution of the Basque to exploration, navigation and trade, as well as to Basques immigrating to North America, from the start of Hispanic presence in the continent to the 20th Century.
'FRANCIS BACON: FROM PICASSO TO VELÁZQUEZ'
The noteworthy patronage work of the company is materialised in a very special way with its permanent collaboration with the Guggenheim Museum of Bilbao, of which it has been its sponsor since it was opened. According to such a commitment, from 30 September to 8 January 2017, Iberdrola sponsored the exhibition Francis Bacon: from Picasso to Velázquez.
Ignacio Galán, Chairman of Iberdrola; Lucia Aguirre, Commissioner of the exhibition; Ignacio Videarte, Director of the Museum.
A valuable selection of almost 80 of the most important works of the British artist, as well as other less-known works and works of different classical masters that had an impact in this career.
The exhibition delved into the impact of the Spanish and French cultures in Bacon's work, a fervent Francophile and expert in the art of the Spanish classical masters, such as Velázquez, Zurbarán, El Greco or Goya.
"It is a huge satisfaction for Iberdrola to have made this magnificent retrospective possible, which goes through over six decades of work of one of the most important artists of the twentieth century", stated Ignacio Galán, chairman of Iberdrola, after the inauguration of the exhibition.
In addition, with the goal of making art accessible to everyone, the Company sponsored the first open door days of the Guggenheim. This is the first time a private entity has allowed visitors to enter for free, encouraging everyone to visit the museum in Bilbao.
Three Studies for a Crucifixion, March 1962.
Oil with sand on canvas, three panels.
198.1 x 144.8 cm each.
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 64.1700.
© The Estate of Francis Bacon. All rights reserved. DACS/VEGAP. Bilbao, 2015.
'SOROLLA IN PARIS'
Iberdrola also sponsored the temporary exhibition Sorolla in Paris, exhibited in the Sorolla Museum of Madrid from the 23rd of November to the 19th of March 2017. During the time it was opened it achieved to beat the record of visitors of the Gallery with a total of 116,510 attendees.
After being exhibited in the Kunsthalle Museum of Munich and the Musée des Impressionnismes of Giverny, the exhibition landed in Madrid, organised by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports and the Fundación Museo Sorolla.
Sorolla in Paris brought 66 paintings selected by the painter to be exhibited in the main international exhibitions. A portray of the international recognition of the artist of Valencia since his first trip to Paris in 1885, until his success in the most important collective exhibitions and his recognition as a painter of the aristocracy of his time.
'Sorolla in Paris' exhibition. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
In its commitment to culture and avant-garde art, Iberdrola also supports several major events and donates important works of art.
An example was the donation by the company of the painting Por España y por el Rey, Gálvez en Pensacola to the Spanish Military Culture and History Institute. This work will be on permanent display at the Army Museum in the recently opened room dedicated to General Bernardo de Gálvez in the Alcázar de Toledo.
Furthermore, the Company was a special sponsor of San Sebastián 2016, European Capital of Culture, as a further testament to its belief in the possibility of a better world through knowledge and multicultural dialogue, and the care and maintenance of our cultural richness and diversity. By supporting this event, the company also aimed to highlight the interaction between culture, the environment and sustainability.
Likewise, Iberdrola has signed an agreement with The Fundación pro-RAE to create a digital version of the forthcoming edition of the Dictionary of the Spanish language, on the celebration of the IV Centenary of the death of Miguel de Cervantes in 2016.
Iberdrola presented the results of the 2017 Iberdrola Museum Program. The initiative is based on the following lines of action of the Conservation and Restoration, Education and Cultural Action Departments of the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum:
Firstly, the program funded the annual restoration of a series of works of art of the museum's permanent collection. Moreover, the Iberdrola-Museum scholarship was awarded to promote training and research in this field. Finally, different learning activities were specially designed and carried out for persons with cognitive disabilities or visual impairment, so they could experience and enjoy the collection.
37 works of art were restored throughout 2017 as part of the program. These were restored by the Conservation and Restoration Department of the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum. In addition, it is worth highlighting that these pieces were used for further historical and artistic analysis after their restoration.
The following participated in the presentation event: Ramón Castresana, Director of Fundación Iberdrola; María José Ruiz-Ozaita, Head of the Conservation and Restoration Department of the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum, and Miguel Zugaza, Director of the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
Additionally, the supervisors of the Atlantic Romanesque Plan, also sponsored by Fundación Iberdrola and the Regional Government of Castilla y León working on the cultural project "Ciudad Rodrigo Cathedral. The door to the kingdom", with the purpose of disseminating the contents of the plan and the actions carried out at the Nuestra Señora de Santa María Cathedral. Conferences, guided visits or cultural activities are only a few of the events of the project. Information about these events was available at the visitor welcome and information point next to the Door of Forgiveness of the Cathedral in Ciudad Rodrigo.
Some of the most interesting events of the project include the Christmas concert held at the cathedral on 22 December 2017. The concert was given by "Scherzo Música de Cámara", with free admission.
Ciudad Rodrigo Cathedral (Salamanca).
The company has started the second stage of the Atlantic Romanesque Plan (cross-border conservation project) in Boticas and Guimarães, with the purpose of restoring and showcasing the cultural heritage of the north of Portugal. During this stage, it has restored the Romanesque churches of Covas del Barroso and Serzedelo.
Covas del Barroso Romanisque church. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
Our overriding objective is to improve the state of artistic monuments and singular buildings, promoting energy efficiency and decreasing environmental pollution. There are some examples:
Iberdrola Mexico has donated a new low-consumption lighting system to the National Art Museum (MUNAL) through Fundación Iberdrola Mexico, allowing visitors to better appreciate the colour, detail and texture of the pieces on display as well as helping to preserve its pieces by controlling lighting levels.
The system, which has received an investment of over a million pesos from the company, is made up of rails and LED lights, which have been installed along the nearly 1.000 m2 comprising the halls that will host the temporary exhibitions. This will save over 85% on annual energy consumption and reduce CO2 emissions.
National Art Museum of Mexico (MUNAL) lighting project. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
On the other hand, Iberdrola has unveiled the new exterior lighting of the main entrance on the south facade of the Monastery of the Order of Santiago in Uclés (Cuenca), after undertaking a process of renovation of the ornamental lighting that highlights on the one hand the expanse of the facade and on the other the architectural details of this monument built in 1735. The Chairman of Iberdrola, Ignacio Galán, together with the Bishop of Cuenca, José María Yanguas; the President of the Castilla-La Mancha Regional Government, Emiliano García-Page; and the Secretary of State-Director of the National Intelligence Centre, Félix Sanz Roldán, attended the switching-on of this lighting for which LED technology luminaires have been installed that reduce the total power by 55%, which means a reduction in both energy expenditure and in CO2 emissions to the atmosphere.
Switching-on of the new exterior lighting of the main entrance on the south facade of the Monastery of the Order of Santiago in Uclés (Cuenca). Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
The company and the Royal Tapestry Factory (Madrid) have also finished renewing the institution's lighting system of the restoration workshop, using cutting-edge LED technology solutions. To this end, it has installed 40 lamps and additional lighting devices, which achieve a higher colour rendering, in addition to implementing a control system to adapt the lighting levels to the needs of the restorer.
The new, more modern and efficient lighting system will help reduce electricity consumption by over 47%, thus reducing the CO2 annual emissions by approximately 3.5 tons.
New lighting system of the Royal Tapestry Factory (Madrid).
Iberdrola has recently upgraded the lighting system installed on the first floor of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts of St. Ferdinand, where the works of the old masters are exhibited, improving the levels of lighting to enhance the experience of visitors, while preserving these works of art better.
Upgrading the lighting system on the first floor of the Museum. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
Likewise, as part of the activities from 11 to 14 October 2017 that commemorated the 20 years of existence of the Guggenheim Museum, the emblematic Frank Gehry building became the canvas for an impressive artistic interpretation thanks to Reflections, a free large-scale video mapping performance, open to the public with the collaboration of Iberdrola. The result: two decades of history and creativity in Bilbao through light, texture and movement.
The Museum of Contemporary Art of Bilbao celebrates its 20th anniversary.
Iberdrola actively collaborates in the edition of different prestigious works:
- Monograph Jesús Mari Lazkano: his pictorial imaginary has been brought together in a book published with the collaboration between Iberdrola and San Sebastián 2016. An invitation to travel and delve into the artist paintings (born in Bergara, in 1960) during his over three decades of work.
Presentation of the book of Jesús Mari Lazkano.
- México: Ensayo de un mito (2016) [PDF]
- Figured, figurations, figurants. To be or (perchance) to dream (2015) [PDF]
- Entre chien et loup, works from the Meana Larrucea Collection (2011) [PDF]
- The Museo del Prado presents three works by Antonio María Esquivel restored with Iberdrola's support (Spanish version)
- Spain's King and Queen visit the 'Recovered Memories' exhibition in New Orleans, sponsored by Iberdrola
- The Fundación Iberdrola España renews its commitment to the Museo del Prado and joins the Bicentenary celebration (Spanish version)