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Brussels, 18/01/2024 - The Sculptura #2 Festival takes place in Brussels from January 19 to March 10, 2024, making the Belgian capital the European epicenter of sculpture under the motto "Art Moves, Art Connects". As an extension this year, it also features the addition of a sculpture park in Tour & Taxis and exhibitions in different parts of the city, including the series of five Siega Verde sculptures in different location that will remain until December 2024. In this context, it is important to underline that Cristobal Gabarron is the only Spanish artist among the 40 participants supported by the Belgian Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Sculptura #2 pays homage to Gabarron, being the artist with the largest selection of artworks, present in the three programs: 'Sculptura #2', 'Sculptura#2 in the city' and in the exhibition 'Art in Democracy'.
Within the program of this festival, for the first time since 1993, the 12 works of the Gabarron's, the sculpture collection Twelve European Muses (1991), are on loan and will be leaving the European Parliament. Under the title Art in Democracy, this exhibition highlights the collection founded in 1980 by the first democratically elected president of the institution, Simone Veil. The European Parliament's Collection of Contemporary Art strives to embody the values and aspirations of the European Union, integrating itself into a broader context of the defense of democracy by contemporary European artists. Art in Democracy not only seeks to express the cultural richness of Europe, but also to promote civic and political awareness about the importance of defending democratic freedoms. Through his work, Gabarron contributes to inspire a dialogue on democracy and to highlight the responsibility of European citizens in the preservation of these values.
In addition to this series, the festival also presents five sculptures from its latest series Siega Verde, which will be exhibited at Tour & Taxis as part of the 'Sculptura #2' program and, at the Migratie Museum Migration as part of the 'Sculptura #2 in the city' program until December 2024. This series is inspired by the Siega Verde Paleolithic ensemble in Salamanca (Spain), recognized by Unesco as exceptional in Iberian Paleolithic art, these works capture the essence of a prehistoric past that has fascinated the artist since he was young. The series reflects his constant exploration of prehistoric themes throughout his career, as evidenced in other series such as 101 Stones, Huellas, El silencio de las piedras, Mi jardín epicúreo and El Nacimiento del Tiempo. These works reflect a creative line that evokes the iconographic themes of these periods in the history of mankind.
Cristobal Gabarron is a transcendental creator in the contemporary Spanish art scene and internationally. Should add, that he has an important connection with Belgium, not only in his works permanently exhibited in the European Parliament, but also through his artistic interventions in the city, where we highlight the permanent exhibition of the 30 commemorative articles of the 70th anniversary of human rights in the "UN House" in Brussels, headquarters for Europe of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights of the United Nations in Brussels; his Enlightened Universe exhibition in Rond-point Schuman or the exhibition in Kanal Centre Pompidou held in 2019. Also recently, the execution of his project Ambit in Parc du Cinquantenaire in July 2023, during the Spanish presidency of the Council of the European Union, where he painted live to raise awareness of the climate crisis, underlining his ongoing commitment to fundamental issues affecting European society.
*Twelve European Muses will be on display at Sculptura #2 until March 10.
Siega Verde will remain outside the Gare Maritime at Tour & Taxis until December 21, 2024.
Aurora Rodriguez: +34.6184.108.40.206 I email@example.com
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Media department | Cristobal Gabarron Museum
Cristobal Gabarron (Mula, 1945. Murcia, Spain) is a renowned painter and sculptor with a long international trajectory distinguished by a deep humanist concept. His works are present in city squares, streets and promenades all over the world, contributing to spread a message of tolerance and coexistence, of harmony with nature and promoting the development of human values.
Born in a small town in Murcia, he spent part of his childhood and youth in Valladolid. France, Italy and the United States have also been stages of his training and growth as an artist.
Milestones in his career are his collaboration with the United Nations or the International Olympic Committee, from where new and interesting pieces emerge.
Cristóbal Gabarrón is no stranger to ideologically affiliated sculptural projects or series. Self-taught, the Spanish artist evolved progressively towards abstraction, from his early exhibitions in Valladolid to monumental memorial installations around Europe. The transition from two-dimensional representations into three-dimensional ones was operated rather smoothly by the artist who retains a pictorial composition in his material production. The Twelve European Muses series suggests as much: although each object is undeniably tangible in real space, the chromatic and graphic arrangement allude to a preferred frontal point of view.
A similar observation can be made about another of his contributions to the European neighbourhood in Brussels, Enlightened Universe, which was inaugurated in 2015 on the occasion of the UN 70th anniversary. A central spherical element surrounded by a spiral of colourful anthropomorphic cut-outs, which bear some kinship with the European Parliament’s series. Throughout the years, Gabarrón’s art has justifiably been associated with event-specific creations: his mural for the Barcelona Olympics (1992) and the Universal Exposition of Seville (1992), sculptures for Atlanta Star (1996), Our Hope for Peace-inspired commemorative stamp for the International Year of Peace based.
You are cordially invited to attend the opening of the Sculptura#2 Festival
at Tour & Taxis on
Friday 19 January 2024 at 11 a.m.
This edition of Sculptura will include a selection of sculptures from the European Parliament Contemporary Art Collection, with the aim of exploring the relationship between art and democracy, as highlighted in the temporary exhibition Art in Democracy. A highly relevant theme in the context of the upcoming European elections in June 2024, where 16-18 year olds in Belgium and some other countries will be invited to vote for the first time. The exhibition will therefore also include a pedagogical kit providing hands-on guidelines and background information for educators to be easily implemented.
Among the selected artworks is the set of Twelve European Muses by the Spanish artist Cristóbal Gabarrón, that represent the European member states at the time of their creation, thus creating a metaphorical human chain. Each individual sculpture alludes to national characteristics or corresponds to important geographic features of the countries, as indicated in their respective titles.
Date and time: 19 January 2024 at 11.00 a.m.
Location: Tour & Taxis, Gare Maritime, Rue Picard 11, 1000 Brussels
Please register here.