New contemporary art centre for Murcia now open

MURCIA. La Conservera, the new contemporary art centre in Murcia, south-east Spain, celebrated its inauguration on 16 May with four exhibitions, by Manu Arregui, Björn Dahlem, Loris Gréaud and Banks Violette. Named for its previous use as a tinned food factory, the 4,800 sq. m space was conceived by Pedro Cruz, the city’s councillor of culture and professor of contemporary art at the University of Murcia.

Pepa Plaza, press officer for the Council of Culture, which oversees La Conservera, told The Art Newspaper: “Previously, there was a space dedicated to educational art and science. When it closed, the councillor took advantage of the existing infrastructure and opened a new centre.”

La Conservera was renovated at a cost of €200,000 and has been allotted a yearly budget of €1m for exhibitions in its four halls. “The idea is to run four parallel, temporary exhibitions,” said Ms Plaza. She added that most of the artists shown will be those born in the 1960s and 1970s. “The programme will be a little risky because, even though they have an impressive curriculum, these are young artists, relatively unknown. But these exhibitions will show work that has never been shown in Spain before. It’s either completely new, or it comes to us from other countries.”

The centre will answer directly to the department of visual arts at the ministry of culture, while art consultancy ABV Arte will manage the programme. Responsibility for the artistic direction will be shared by ABV’s Pablo del Val and Rocío Bardín.

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