The León Ferrari donation

The donation includes an important selection of pencil, ink and pastel drawings, watercolours, collages and altered reproductions. In total, they make up a significant sample of León’s output, showcasing his different interests and his constant exploration of drawing – defined as a single work on paper – to which he returned again and again to create works of great sensitivity and impact that throughout his long, prolific life responded to the socio-political and artistic-cultural context around him.

The exhibition featured the drawings from the donation in dialogue with some works loaned by the Ferrari family for the occasion, together with an important set of paintings and sculptures presented on a five-year loan from the Fundación Augusto y León Ferrari, and a selection of artworks that were already part of the Museo’s Collection.

Among the earlier pieces that make up this donation of Ferrari’s artwork, those that experiment with writing as drawing are particularly notable. The inks on paper from these years exemplify the criticisms of political and religious power that resounded throughout his career. The donation also includes several drawings dated between 1976 and 1979, a period during which Ferrari returned to drawing after several years when the national and international political climate drove him to produce more explicit protest art based on collages, objects and texts.

The current donation includes eight collages produced between 1986 and 1987 from the series Relectura de la Biblia (Re-reading the Bible) and eleven works using newspaper cuttings. These works continued to make use of assemblage strategies such as juxtaposing languages – both visual and textual – discourses, – such as the Holy Scriptures and contemporary politics – and images representing different cultures, such as the contrast between East and West.