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The 3rd MAXAM Painting Exhibition brings together more than 40 artists with intellectual disabilities
The 3rd MAXAM Painting Exhibition brings together more than 40 artists with intellectual disabilities The 3rd MAXAM Painting Exhibition brings together more than 40 artists with intellectual disabilities


MAXAM Foundation - Press room - News - The 3rd MAXAM Painting Exhibition brings together more than 40 artists with intellectual disabilities

  • The participants have produced a free interpretation of the work 'Vanitas' by Alfonso Albacete, the image for MAXAM's 2019 Calendar.
  • The works will be on display at Centro Cultural Casa de Vacas del Retiro, Madrid, until 31st March.
  • The exhibition defends the right of expression and opinion of the disabled community, as enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Today Madrid Down Syndrome Foundation (Down Madrid) and MAXAM Foundation officially open the exhibition of works by 40 artists with intellectual disabilities who have taken part in MAXAM's 3rd Painting Competition at Centro Cultural Casa de Vacas del Retiro. The exhibition can be visited free of charge from tomorrow (Wednesday) until 31st March.

Participants in the competition have reinterpreted 'Vanitas', a piece by the artist Afonso Albacete that provides the image for MAXAM's 2019 Calendar.

Visitors to the exhibition will be able to see first-hand the artistic ability of people with learning difficulties, who generally have great creative potential, often defined by the use of simple lines and large splashes of colour. Each painting has a different style, a different way of using colours –some more realistic, others more abstract–, but all of them show the feelings, sensations and emotions that Alfonso Albacete's work has evoked in these artists with learning difficulties.

"This competition, which is now in its third edition, is the result of a successful collaboration with Down Madrid, and allows us to help contribute to the progress and sustainable development of our society through cultural and educational programs", explains Fernanda Cardama, Global Head People & Resources of MAXAM and Patron of the Foundation.

Meanwhile, Inés Álvarez Arancedo, Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of Down Madrid, points out that "our artists have interpreted a work of value without being aware that they themselves also impregnate our lives with value".

Moreover, Ángela Rodríguez, an artist from Down Madrid who won third prize in the 3rd MAXAM Painting Contest, says that she loved this interpretation of 'Vanitas' as it made her think for herself, use her imagination, and be relaxed in order to start painting this work on a blank canvas.

Through their involvement in this activity, the participants have clearly demonstrated their right to freedom of expression and opinion, as set out in the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and to participation in cultural life, allowing them to develop their creative, artistic and intellectual potential for the betterment of society.

The exhibition displaying work from the 3rd MAXAM Painting Competition officially opened on World Down Syndrome Day last 21st March. Over the course of one week, Down Madrid organized different activities to showcase the abilities of people with Down syndrome and create awareness of their rights, culminating in an exhibition displaying the works of the competition winners and finalists.

Madrid Down Syndrome Foundation (Down Madrid) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to achieve individual autonomy and full social inclusion for people with Down syndrome or other learning disabilities. The work that Down Madrid has been doing for almost 30 years would not have been possible without the collaboration of the people and entities that support its work.

The MAXAM Foundation ( is a non-profit organization that supports cultural and educational programmes allowing it to contribute to the sustainable progress and development of society. Its activities in the cultural sphere include the MAXAM Painting Collection, a pioneering initiative in business patronaje; the House of the Explosive (MUMI); the conservation of the company's historical heritage and publishing information about Alfred Nobel. In the field of educatoin, the MAXAM Foundation organizes progammes to promote knowledge through the MAXAM Explosives Technology Business-Chair (ETSIME, UPM) and through agreements with prestigious universities across the globe. It also supports projects with schools and students in the local communities where the company operates.

MAXAM is a global technology company, specializing in the design, development, manufacturing and application of energy materials. It structures its activity into four business units: blasting solutions for mining, quarries, and public works; cartridges and gun powders for use in hunting and recreational shooting; products and systems for the defence and security sector; and production of key primary products in nitro chemical activity. Founded by Alfred Nobel in 1872, today MAXAM employs more tan 6,500 people on 5 continents, in 80 industrial facilities, with subsidiaries in more than 50 countries and commercial operations in over 100 countries. At the close of the 2018 financial year (31 March 2018), the company's turnover stood at over 1,141 billion euros.

For further details
MAXAM - Corporate Communications
Alba Rodriguez


Last update 2019.09.17
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