on The 28th of October 1982, the PSOE won the general elections by an absolute majority, with 46% of the votes. The slogan of the electoral had been the time of The change, and the country entered a phase of radical transformations among whose primary objectives was the change of the image before the world. Had to finish with the slide in black-and-white of Spain backward and marginal. So nothing better than have recourse to the contemporary art to be entered in the large spaces international. Javier Solana, Minister of Culture between 1982 and 1988, was very clear that the entry of Spain into the European Economic Community in 1986 was a unique opportunity to present new creators. To execute the plan turned to the curator, Carmen Giménez, who served as head of the official policy of exhibitions between 1983 and 1989 in different locations. A year later, in 1990, would open its doors in Madrid, the Reina Sofía National Museum.


“The pain produces memories indelible” Barcelo said: “The painting is the uselessness of the essence,”

With more or less variants, there were then five artists who, in the manner of rock stars, moved his work through all the possible scenarios. Were Miquel Barceló, Ferran García Sevilla, José Manuel Broto, José María Sicilia and Miguel Angel Campano, who is celebrating a major retrospective at the Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid until the 20th of April. Titled D’après, the exhibition presents a hundred of his works carried out since 1972. Next to this original nucleus came immediately after other Spanish artists such as Juan Muñoz, Cristina Iglesias, Susana Solano and Juan Uslé, although the chronicles of the time focus on the quintet led by Barceló.

Carmen Giménez brought his experience as an independent curator and collaborator of the Joint Committee Hispano-American Cultural Cooperation. The exposition, Contemporary Spanish Prints, was two and a half years in eight museums and universities in the united States. There was the work of Bonifacio Alfonso, Frederic Amat, Canogar Rafael, Jorge Castillo, Eduardo Chillida, Gerardo Delgado, Team Chronic, Amadeo Gabino, Luis Gordillo, José Guerrero and Josep Guinovart. At the same time, Gimenez brought to Madrid and Barcelona, Trends in New York city, Eric Fischl, Keith Haring, Bryan Hunt, Bill Jensen, Robert Moskowitz, Susan Rothenberg, David Salle, Kenny Scharf, Julian Schnabel, and Donald Sultan.

expand photo From left, Ferran García Sevilla, Menchu Lamas, the curator of the exhibition Donald Sultan, Carmen Giménez (crouching), Jose Maria Sicilia and Miguel Angel Campazo, in 1985, in the exhibition “Europalia’. FILE CARMEN GIMÉNEZ

they were All very young, painting was his medium of expression and practiced informalism as outlined out

“The Spain socialist, awoke a global interest”, remember now Carmen Giménez from the Solomon R. Guggenheim of New York. “They were years of enthusiasm, excitement and a lot of work because we had a budget very small and everything was done.” Ensures that she does not chose the participating artists at the many exhibitions held abroad. “The choice made by the curators or directors of museums where he was going to expose. We had a lot of care in that both the minister Solana as me. Despite this, I know that we rained down criticism from media and any artist not included”.

they were All very young (around 30 years), the painting was his medium of expression and practiced informalism similar to what you could see in the galleries of New York, London or Paris. Nothing to do with the generations immediately preceding. They were never a cohesive group or shared artistic principles. Despite the match in Mallorca for years, personal relationships have been rare, except in the case of Sicily and Campano. All continued to live of its work and, with greater or lesser fortune, have continued to appear in various exhibitions.

Miquel Barceló (Felanitx, Majorca, 1957), had its own gallery from the age of 17. With 27, in 1985, she starred in a retrospective at the Palacio de Velázquez in Madrid. The “number one”, as he called Gimenez, has become one of the names indisputable of the international landscape and the work carried out between Mallorca and Paris is part of the public and private collections more relevant.

Ferran García Sevilla (Palma de Majorca, 1949) has lived in Barcelona since the age of 18 years. Remember those exhibitions joint with the feeling of having participated in a hoax mounted to clothe a foreign policy that does not comulgaba. Despite this, she feels a great recognition by Carmen Giménez. Artist of attitude radical, eight years ago decided to stop painting and to destroy a large part of his paintings. “I grabbed a chainsaw and began to open packaging in which she kept paintings of the eighties and I was desmigando one after the other. I brushed my 102 and that might have followed. I lowered the remains into a container and I was so happy. No remorse”.

Despite what was said then, García Sevilla has returned to painting and to intervene in their work. Your last action has been on the series Gods, which is exposed in the permanent collection of the Macba in Barcelona. Handed over to the independence cause, on the 24th of October last came into the museum and pasted and inserted notes against the judgment of the procés, and in defense of the Catalan republic. The result is a video to spread through social networks. The artist confesses that does not maintain great relationship with their colleagues of the eighties, although he acknowledges that he could have survived an invisible thread between them. José Manuel Broto (Zaragoza, 1949) spoke in the last year to know how she was doing after the floods of Sant Llorenç, the mallorcan village situated to the east of the island in which he lives and continues to paint the artist in zaragoza from three decades ago.

Ferran Garcia Sevilla entered the MACBA and pasted and inserted notes against the judgment of the procés

José María Sicilia (Madrid, 1954) is, after the Barcelo, the artist that more national and international recognition, has had within the quintet. National prize of Plastic Arts, she has lived between Paris, Soller (Majorca) and Madrid. In 2017, launched the Foundation in The Moment, from the that promotes projects and actions with a social dimension, scientific and cultural. Sicily is not interested in anything the exhibitions institutional starred in those early days, because it is something that we undo in memory. Prefer to converse in writing with Miguel Ángel Campano, his colleague and friend, with whom he made his last work for the Foundation: “The past goes bad the most of the times. Sometimes not even passing. Miguel Angel, but what about you and me what are we? Nothing. A story, a hoax”.

what was the contribution to the art of all of them? What was just a bubble, swollen by the political interests of the moment? The critic and historian Fernando Huici puts it in doubt. “There is a bubble. It is a group of artists that connect with what is done on the outside. When Barceló will choose for the Documenta in Kassel in 1982, not elected from the Spanish Government. What you decide to Rudi Fuchs, one of the most important referents of those years in the contemporary art. I think that all of them, with differences, are owners of a work that has survived very well. And what is more important is that, in this decade, the Spanish art lived a promotion as never before nor after has there been. The 90s and that promotion ended”.


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