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The project

The Hortensia Herrero Art Centre (CAHH) has two key aims. One is to share the best international contemporary art with society at large and the other is to help turn the Valencian Autonomous Community into a top cultural and artistic destination.
The Centre will show off the Hortensia Herrero Foundation’s private collection, which includes works by artists such as Andreas Gursky, Anselm Kiefer, Georg Baselitz, and Anish Kapoor, as well as temporary exhibitions of other world-famed artists.

The project also meets one of the Foundation’s key aims, namely heritage conservation by restoring and repurposing an iconic Valencian palace.

The Centre is scheduled to open in 2023.

Julian Opie May 27 - September 19
Valencia exhibition

JULIAN OPIE

May 27 – September 19

The exhibition organised by the Hortensia Herrero Foundation presents, for the first time in Valencia, monumental sculptures by Julian Opie (London, 1958). The exhibition brings together sixteen works, installed in the Plaza del Colegio del Patriarca and the La Nau Cultural Centre, which focus on the human figure in motion, walking through the city, alone or in a crowd; walking, running to catch a train or waiting in the square with their arms folded.

The event transcends the usual margins of a museum to take over the streets in the centre of Valencia with the aim of bringing contemporary art to the public. Specifically for this project, Julian Opie has created two previously unseen steel sculptures that are twelve metres high and weigh six tonnes and occupy the Plaza del Colegio del Patriarca, and which will change the city’s landscape for the coming few months. The pieces represent two human figures, people from the artist’s circle whom he captures carrying out their everyday activities.

Next to them is a sculptural group of four walkers, which are over two metres tall, that originated from the photographs Opie takes of anonymous people walking along the street. These pieces look more like three-dimensional drawings than sculptures. And all the work by the British creator has its origin in drawing, the first visual thought of every artist.

The exhibition continues in the cloister to La Nau with figures in dialogue with the statue of Luis Vives. A contrast between the new and the old. The contemporary pieces are set beside a nineteenth-century sculpture by José Aixá. The academy’s statue represents a man who was ahead of his time, a Renaissance humanist who was born in Valencia and studied at the university, but moved to Julian Opie’s country to work at the court of Henry VIII along with his friend and colleague Thomas More. These sculptures have now travelled in the opposite direction to that taken by Luis Vives by travelling from London to Valencia to pay homage to the Valencian thinker.

The exhibition is completed with two light boxes, two cubes with more walkers and his well-known animations on LED screens, visions of anonymous crowds going about their daily business in big cities. These pieces, in the same style as the friezes in ancient Egyptian art, show characters with their facial features hidden, linked by the black lines with which Opie always defines his figures.

According to Opie, “the earliest Greek and Egyptian statues were often carved as moving figures. This implicit movement gives a dynamic and an elegance to the figure, a perception of intention, independence and power. A standing figure seems to be reacting to the observer. However, a walking figure is distracted, so it can observed without confrontation. The whole idea of scale is somewhat strange, we read scale in relation to ourselves – elephants are big, ants are small – but it can easily be reversed; solar systems can look like ping-pong balls, and the interiors of computers like Asian cities. We have the ability to project and see from outside our perspective”.

The exhibition, which has the collaboration of Valencia City Council and the University of Valencia, through the Vice-Rectorate of Culture and Sport, will be open from 27 May until 19 September 2021.

Julian Opie

Julian Opie was born in 1958 in London and graduated in 1983 from Goldsmiths School of Art. He lives and works in London.

With public commissions from Seoul to New York, Luxembourg to Zurich and a steady flow of large museum exhibitions internationally, the work of Julian Opie is known throughout the world. Opie’s distinctive formal language is instantly recognisable and reflects his artistic preoccupation with the idea of representation, and the means by which images are perceived and understood.

Always exploring different techniques both cutting edge and ancient, Opie plays with ways of seeing through reinterpreting the vocabulary of everyday life; his reductive style evokes both a visual and spatial experience of the world around us. Taking influence from classical portraiture, Egyptian hieroglyphs and Japanese woodblock prints, as well as public signage, information boards and traffic signs, the artist connects the clean visual language of modern life, with the fundamentals of art history.

Major museum exhibitions include Kunstverein, Cologne; Hayward Gallery and ICA in London; K21, Dusseldorf; MAK, Vienna; Mito Tower, Japan, CAC, Malaga; IVAM, Valencia; MoCAK, Krakow; Tidehalle, Helsinki, Fosun Foundation, Shanghai, Suwon IPark Museum of Art, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne and Berardo Museum, Lisbon.

Public projects include Dentsu Building, Tokyo 2002; City Hall Park, New York 2004; River Vltava, Prague 2007; Calgary, Canada, 2012; PKZ, Zurich 2014; Carnaby Street, London 2016; Tower 535, Hong Kong 2016 and Fosun Foundation, Shanghai 2018.

Public art collections holding Opie’s works include, Tate, British Museum, Victoria & Albert, Arts Council, British Council and National Portrait Gallery in London; MoMA, New York; ICA, Boston USA; Essl Collection, Vienna; The Israel Museum in Jerusalem and Takamatsu City Museum of Art, Japan.

www.julianopie.com

Andreas Gursky
Andreas Gursky _Nha Trang. 2004
Anselm Kiefer
Anselm Kiefer _ Walhalla. 2015-2017
Baselitz
Georg Baselitz _ Bündel. 2015
Anish Kapoor
Anish Kapoor _Random Triangle Mirror. 2013

ANDREAS
GURSKY

Nha Trang, 2004.
273.2 x 185 cm (unframed)
295.5 x 207 cm (framed).
Edición 3/6

Andreas Gursky has been acknowledged as one of the greatest photographers of our age. Born in Leipzig in 1955, his works have changed how people see photography — sometimes from over five yards away and always in colour, impressing viewers by their sheer size.

Gursky belongs to the Düsseldorf School, together with photographers such as Candida Höffer, Axel Hütte, and Thomas Ruff. Objects are repeated and build up in Gursky’s works yet despite the evident complexity of the images, they nevertheless enshrine an implicit order. Gursky’s works use digital techniques, diffuse light, and use frontal views and elevated viewpoints to create photos showing a wealth of detail, as in paintings.

The dehumanised blocks of flats, airports, office halls, football grounds, or products lining supermarket shelves can be found in works that have made Gursky an archetypal photographer of globalisation and modernity.

His photographs are exhibited at The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York, The Tate Modern in London, and The Museum of Modern Art (Haus der Kunst) in Munich, among others.

ANSELM
KIEFER

Walhalla, 2015-2017.
280 x 380 x 38 cm.

The work of the German artist Anselm Kiefer (Donaueschingen, 1945) uses materials such as ashes, earth, straw, concrete, and lead to depict the destruction found in Post-War Germany and the decadence of German ideals. The artist was born in Germany just a few months before the end of The Second World War and throughout his career he has always seen the need to face up the past no matter how awful it may be. He is interested in the Jewish Kabbalah, Alchemy, Norse Mythology, and Wagnerian Opera. He is one of the highest-earning international artists in his field.

Kiefer’s canvases are always large, feature a lot of organic material and little colour. They are replete with flaming trees, burnt cities and solitary men, and allude to history and memory. Kiefer’s output includes paintings, sculptures, photographs, and art books.

In Walhalla, the German artist refers to the Valhalla of Norse Mythology — a heaven in which the gods dwell, and to which fallen warriors are borne by the Valkyries.

GEORG
BASELITZ

Bündel, 2015.
146.5 x 73 x 78 cm.

George Baselitz (Deutschbaselitz, 1938) is one of the most influential artists of our age. He has stuck to the classical disciplines of painting and sculpture throughout his career. His oeuvre reveals his feelings about events in Post-War Germany, and show a return to figurative art that ties in with early 20th Century German Expressionism.

In 1969, he presented his famous ‘Upside Down’ pictures in which all the figures and landscapes were painted the wrong way up. The artist used this approach to break with the past in much the same way that Cubism had broken the mould in its day. In doing so, Baselitz created an upside-down universe. His sculptures, as in his paintings, centre on the human figure hewn straight from a trunk. Baselitz’s works stem from the artist’s intuition and reflection, recalling the African Art that Baselitz so admires.

Baselitz’s works can be found in museums and private collections around the world, including The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), The Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET), Guggenheim Museum, Centre Georges Pompidou, The Stedelijk Museum, and The Tate Modern.

ANISH
KAPOOR

Random Triangle Mirror, 2013.
190 x 190 x 29 cm.

The Anglo-Indian sculptor (Bombay, 1954), winner of the prestigious Turner Prize in 1991, has exhibited his work in museums such as The Tate Modern and The Royal Academy of Arts. His works embellish the pages of British passports.

Kapoor is a member of the New British Sculpture Movement that transformed the London scene in the 1980s. His works explore form and space, and use colour and materials in ways that have transformed the contemporary sculpture scene.

Much of the artist’s work questions perceptions of reality and seeks to convey a metaphysical meaning that is interpreted by each viewer. The notion of the void appears in his works, creating a new, inner dimension in sculpture — a dimension that up until then had been confined to the architectural field.

In a career spanning over forty years, Kapoor has studied and experimented with all kinds of materials and techniques (ranging from stone to wax, felt, steel, and even sky-reflecting mirrors) to create huge works that overcome barriers. Another hallmark of his sculptures is his use of primary colours — brilliant blues, reds, and yellows.

Baselitz
Georg Baselitz _ Bündel. 2015
Anish Kapoor
Anish Kapoor _Random Triangle Mirror. 2013

GEORG
BASELITZ

Bündel, 2015.
146.5 x 73 x 78 cm.

George Baselitz (Deutschbaselitz, 1938) is one of the most influential artists of our age. He has stuck to the classical disciplines of painting and sculpture throughout his career. His oeuvre reveals his feelings about events in Post-War Germany, and show a return to figurative art that ties in with early 20th Century German Expressionism.

In 1969, he presented his famous Upside Down pictures in which all the figures and landscapes were painted the wrong way up. The artist used this approach to break with the past in much the same way that Cubism had broken the mould in its day. In doing so, Baselitz created an upside-down universe. His sculptures, as in his paintings, centre on the human figure hewn straight from a trunk. Baselitz’s works stem from the artist’s intuition and reflection, recalling the African Art that Baselitz so admires.

Baselitz’s works can be found in museums and private collections around the world, including The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), The Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET), Guggenheim Museum, Centre Georges Pompidou, The Stedelijk Museum, and The Tate Modern.

ANISH
KAPOOR

Random Triangle Mirror, 2013.
190 x 190 x 29 cm.

The Anglo-Indian sculptor (Bombay, 1954), winner of the prestigious Turner Prize in 1991, has exhibited his work in museums such as The Tate Modern and The Royal Academy of Arts. His works embellish the pages of British passports.

Kapoor is a member of the New British Sculpture Movement that transformed the London scene in the 1980s. His works explore form and space, and use colour and materials in ways that have transformed the contemporary sculpture scene.

Much of the artist’s work questions perceptions of reality and seeks to convey a metaphysical meaning that is interpreted by each viewer. The notion of the void appears in his works, creating a new, inner dimension in sculpture — a dimension that up until then had been confined to the architectural field.

In a career spanning over forty years, Kapoor has studied and experimented with all kinds of materials and techniques (ranging from stone to wax, felt, steel, and even sky-reflecting mirrors) to create huge works that overcome barriers. Another hallmark of his sculptures is his use of primary colours — brilliant blues, reds, and yellows-.

The building

The greatest task facing the Hortensia Herrero Art Centre will to shape the building housing the collection. This edifice is none other than the Palacio Valeriola (Valeriola Palace), an iconic 17th-century building in the Baroque Style, in Valencia’s Old Town. It lies close to the ruins of the Roman Circus and what was formerly The Jewish Quarter.

The Palace was put to various uses over the years and has lain empty for several decades. The Hortensia Herrero Foundation has now acquired Palacio Valeriola in order to restore it and give this fine building a new lease on life as an Arts Centre.

Enjoy our videos of the restoration and renovation works up until project completion.

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The city

Valencia, the future site of the Hortensia Herrero Art Centre, is fast becoming a cultural Mecca. The latest step in this direction is the city’s designation as World Design Capital in 2022. Both artists and local architects are helping to put Valencia on the map.

Apart from having a bright future, Valencia also has a history going back over 2,000 years. The city’s remarkable cultural heritage has inspired much of the Foundation’s work from the outset.

JAUME PLENSA

2019
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TONY CRAGG

2018
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MANOLO VALDÉS

2017
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The HORTENSIA
HERRERO
FOUNDATION

The Hortensia Herrero Foundation sprang to life in 2012 with the mission of fostering interest, knowledge and awareness of art and culture through projects created in The Valencian Autonomous Community by artists from around the world.

Key projects undertaken by the Foundation include: the restoration of Valencia’s College of High Silk Art; the restoration of the frescoes in the Iglesia de San Nicolás (Saint Nicholas Church) — the so-called ‘Valencian Sistine Chapel’; various temporary exhibitions of monumental sculptures in several cities in the Valencian Autonomous Community; support for dance through Gala Valencia Danza Somos Arte (dance festival); the Valencia International Dance Campus.

Furthermore, once the Valeriola Palace has been restored, the Hortensia Herrero Art Centre will also house the offices of the Hortensia Herrero Foundation.

Hortensia Herrero is the President of the Foundation that bears her name. She is Vice-President and majority shareholder of Mercadona, Spain’s biggest supermarket chain. Her philanthropic work stems from her wish to give back to the land where she was born and that has given her so much in life.

Dº Hortensia Mª Herrero, Presidenta de la Fundación Hortensia Herrero

Hortensia Herrero, President of the Hortensia Herrero Foundation

Hortensia Herrero,
President of the Hortensia Herrero Foundation

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