On 13th February, a group of students visited the rooms dedicated to Modern Art at the National Art Museum of Catalonia (MNAC). Dedicated to this type of art, the first floor reopened in 2014 after a refurbishment process that involved the renewal of the collections, the rooms and the museum layout and style. It now gives critical and complex descriptions of the artworks, avoiding a simple succession of styles and names. It also includes all the forms of artistic expression from the period: sculpture, painting, photography, poster art, film, architecture and decorative arts.
One remarkable feature is the greater presence of elements that give an insight into the social, historical and artistic context of the time, and it highlights the international connections of the artists and movements based in Barcelona and Catalonia. This new presentation of the collection for the 19th and 20th Centuries reaches all the way up to the 1950s for the first time, including the Dau al Set movement. It is structured into four areas and an epilogue: the modern artist, Art Nouveau, Noucentisme, Art and Civil War, and the avant-garde in the Post-War period.
On this guided tour, students had the chance to enjoy the work of the Art Nouveau masters of Barcelona, such as Antoni Gaudí, the most famous figure from the movement, in the late 19th Century and early 20th Century, took the characteristic aspirations of this movement to the most radical extreme. Jujol, who worked with Gaudí from around 1906 onwards, was the only person able to maintain the maestro’s tension in his work, with attitudes that ended up converging with the most avant-garde techniques of the time: collage, assemblage, etc.
The students gained an insight into the artworks and were fascinated. “I find it really interesting. It is a really great initiative for the School to organize this kind of tours, not only so that we see the works of art, but get to hear all about their history and the details, and that is fantastic”, emphasized Daniel Alejandro González, a Bolivian student on the Master in Marketing and Commercial Management. Daniel has been on his own to other museums in the city and, when he finishes the Master, he would like to work here for a while. Meanwhile, Andrés Torres, a student on the MBA, found the visit really interesting. “We have seen various rooms of paintings and sculptures”.
For Estefanía Mancilla, a student on the Master in Marketing and Commercial Management, it is the first time that she has visited the MNAC “We have seen great examples of Art Nouveau architecture with the various stages of construction. I am an architect and, for me, it is a very valuable experience to be able to hear about the works on display. The guide and the tour have been perfect”. Estefanía will come another day to see all the artworks at the museum, especially the Medieval art. She would also love to go to the Picasso Museum. With respect to her Master program, she explained that, in the field of architecture, she needed to gain more competences, because it is essential to have a really personalized marketing strategy, “and you need some insight into that area”. She is very satisfied with her studies. “As it is a Weekend Master, I have more flexibility in terms of the timetable”.