Today, the Council of Ministers definitively closed an operation that had been under negotiation for some time. And he put a number, monumental. The Council has agreed to acquire the very important Archivo Lafuente collection, which brings together numerous collections and documentary funds related to modern and contemporary art, to become part of the collections of the Reina Sofía National Art Museum. And the overwhelming amount of the purchase will be 29,795,045.21 euros which will be paid in eleven annuities, paying the last in 2032.
The funds will not have a fixed headquarters in Madrid but in Santander, where they are currently located and where a center associated with the Reina Sofía Museum is being built in the former headquarters of the Bank of Spain by the town hall. The unexpected forger of the collection, José María Lafuente (Lugo, 1957), has lived in Cantabria since the age of one, businessman in the cheese sector, supplier of Mercadona, who for more than two decades has been creating archives with 138,000 documents including 19,000 original works including paintings, sculptures, drawings, photographs and collages.
The Archivo Lafuente is an archival fund, a collection of contemporary art collections specializing in the history of 20th century art in Latin America, the United States and Europe, with particular emphasis on the Spain, where in recent years he has acquired many of the archives of the countercultural and comic world of the 70s and 80s, of Nazario and magazines Ajoblanco there Star to Javier Mariscal, Ceesepe, El Cubri, Miguel Farriol, Montesol, Pepichek and Roger and Isa.
The holdings are particularly comprehensive in Futurism, Dadaism and Surrealism, the Russian avant-garde and Soviet artistic production
But in addition, the collections of the Lafuente Archives are above all exhaustive and unique in Futurism, Dadaism and Surrealism, the Russian avant-garde and Soviet artistic production, the typographical revolution of the beginning of the 20th century and, above all, in the artistic production networks of the second half of the 20th century: experimental writing and poetry, artists’ publications and what is known as mail art or mail art.
The structure of the Lafuente Archives is chronological and geographical, with two main periods, the first which goes from 1900 to 1945 and the second which covers the year 1945 to 1989. The international artistic networks after the Second World War are represented in practically all of its extension in Europe, especially in Spain and Italy, in the United States and throughout Latin America, with collections by artists such as Marcel Broodthaers, Sol LeWitt, Ulises Carrión, Ray Johnson, Gianni Bertini, José Luis Castillejo , Henri Chopin, Edgardo Antonio Vigo or George Maciunas.
The collection covers multiple formats: photographs, correspondence, manuscripts, manifestos, books, comics, magazines, newspapers, posters, drawings, prints, works of art… Also other types of media and less common formats such as artists’ books, photo books, print and manuscript projects of conceptual works, documentation of performances, actions and living arts, object books, assembled magazines, fanzines, graphic design sketches and models, pieces of mail art, works of experimental literature and original comics.
The Reina Sofía considers the Lafuente Archive to be comparable to only two of the most important private collections in the United States and Europe: the Merrill C. Berman Collection and the Edigio Marzona Collection, with which she has maintained points of affinity.