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MAXAM Foundation
MAXAM Collection. The yesterday and today of the explosives calendars

MAXAM Foundation - MAXAM Collection - MAXAM Collection. The yesterday and today of the explosives calendars

Madrid (Spain). 2011. 04 .07 - 05.08

Arganzuela disctrict

In the year 1899 the Board of Directors of MAXAM decided to assign a prestigious painter, recognized by both, the critics and the public, a work of art that subsequently would be reproduced as a calendar with the aim to advertise the company’s products.
Since then, the company has published every year, up until today, this calendar repeating the same line of thought as in the 1900: to assign a prestigious author an original work, of free subject but related to the activity, and in a figurative sense – at the time, this was an out of the box approach for the beginnings of the pictorial avant – garde.

The work reproduced as a calendar had a double effect: it consolidated the poster technique in our country expanding art throughout the Spanish geography in the shape of a calendar. The printed collection in the hands of individual people became, in words of the journalist Luis Carandell, in “…the museum of those who never went to the museum…” in those days and ages were art education was inexistent. The group of authors that have given shape to the Collection since 1900 includes classic signatures as Cecilio Plá. Manuel Benedito Vives or Julio Romero de Torres (With up to four calendars reproducing his Works), and currently with Rafael Canogar, Juan Genovés, Eduardo Arroyo or Eduardo Urculo.
The assignment (but not purchase) of each work since 1900 has produced a unique painting collection, by its genesis, by the set of authors gathered together and by the chosen theme. In addition, we should point out the fact of this cultural patronage in business, an initiative pioneer at the time.

Almanac and women of explosives
The activity of the Company, manufacturer of explosive products for their use in mining, quarries and infrastructures, gave place for the calendars to be popularly known as the almanacs of explosives. Another of MAXAM’s activities, as manufacturer of cartridges and gunpowder for sports hunting, together with the woman theme, represented in a sensual and daring manner under the canon of the beginning of the 20th century, gave place for them to be known as the women of explosives.

Yesterday and today of the explosive calendars
The layout the MAXAM Foundation exhibits in the Lonja, the exhibition hall of the Junta Municipal of Arganzuela belonging to Madrid’s Town Hall, shows the relationship the actual authors have established in their creations with the more classic works of the collection. Those that taught them how to paint, as Eduardo Urculo mentioned he did with the works of Fernando Briones, or how Martin Bequé reinterpreted the myth of Santa Bárbara, already worked on by Arturo Mélida: or those that gave identity to MAXAM and its Foundation, Rafael Canogar and Julio Romero de Torres. This exhibition proposes fourteen works of art from the initial Collection to the ones created in recent years by today artists.
A dialogue between the Works demanded by the public (in times when the Internet didn’t exist, nor the television or exhibitions in museums) reaching out to everyone, who anxiously awaited each year’s calendar print. Today’s reproductions have succeeded, despite the visual attack we suffer, in becoming icons of the present moment.
The official inauguration of the MAXAM Collection, Yesterday and today of the explosive calendars will take place at 19:30h of the 7th of April in the Exhibition hall of La Lonja de la Casa del Reloj of the Arganzuela disctrict.
Paseo de la Chopera, 10. Madrid.

7th of April - 8th of May.
Monday to Friday: from 10.00 a.m. to 14.00 p.m. and from 17.00 to 20.00 p.m.
Saturday, Sunday and holiday: from 11.00 a.m. to 14.00 p.m.
The 1st may, the sall will be closed.


Last update 2020.05.21
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