Acquisitions Spain

Long loan makes Barcelona a Matta-Clark centre

Collector Harold Berg has agreed to lend "indefinitely” a cache of photographs by the artist

Splitting by Matta-Clark

BARCELONA. The collector Harold Berg has agreed to lend “indefinitely” a cache of photographs, taken by US artist Gordon Matta-Clark in the 1970s, to the Museu d’Art Contemporani Barcelona (Macba).

The loan consists of 46 images documenting Matta-Clark’s famous “building cuts”, including Splitting, 1974 (above). The photographs, formerly known as the Bex archive, were acquired by Berg from Florent Bex, the director of the Internacional Cultureel Centrum in Antwerp.

The collection joins the 17 Matta-Clark works Macba already owns (13 videos, two photographs and two photocollages). This means the museum now holds one of the largest Matta-Clark collections in Europe, along with the Generali Foundation in Vienna, the Pompidou Centre in Paris and the Reina Sofía in Madrid. An exhibition of Matta-Clark’s works, including those loaned by Berg, is due to open at Macba at the end of 2012.

Meanwhile, the Barcelona museum is currently negotiating the acquisition of 7,000 volumes from the late Catalan poet Joan Brossa’s library. Macba is in discussion with the Fundació Brossa and the city of Barcelona over the possible acquisition, which also includes around 40,000 items, including letters, object poems, visual poems and installations.

The Fundación Brossa has been forced to sell the volumes and archive of the poet’s work owing to the harsh financial climate. One of the foundation’s great endeavours has always been that Brossa’s work should not be dispersed.

Earlier this year, Macba accepted a loan of 80,000 photographs, taken by Xavier Miserachs between 1954 and 1998, for a renewable 25-year period. Other recent loans include 800 pieces by the English-American art collective, Art & Language, loaned by the French art collector Philippe Méaille for a period of five years (The Art Newspaper, May, p20).

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