Above: Escalators in the Pablo Serrano Instituto Aragones de Arte y Cultura Contemporaneous
Science and humanism must be an embrace and not a wall that separates reason and feeling.”
Pablo Serrano (1908-1985)
Born in Crivillen in Teruel, a province of Aragon Spain, Pablo Serrano must have felt his calling toward art at a young age. When he was 14 years old, he left home to begin eight years of study in sculpture in Barcelona. At age 22, he packed his bags and moved to Montevideo, Uruguay.
Despite his distance from Spain, the abstract sculptor’s influence rose as a major force in the Spanish avant-garde movement. Known as an expressionist, he interjected his subjective perspective in his work instead of feeling compelled to accurately replicate nature or his subjects. Serrano returned to Spain in 1957, continuing to exhibit internationally and often working on major public art commissions, including a sculpture of King Juan Carlos of Spain unfinished at the time of his death.
Continue reading “Postcard from Zaragoza, Spain: Escalating focus on modern art”
Above: Reliquaries in the Alma Mater Museum
After Aragon King Alfonso I (1073-1134), the Battler, conquered the Moors (prior post), construction began immediately on a cathedral atop a former Mosque. The king gifted the archbishop with adjacent land for his headquarters.
When Aragon King Alfonso II (1157-1196) ascended to the throne, he had other plans. The Aljaferia Palace was not grand or comfortable enough for him, so he began major remodeling and additions to this prominent location. Upper floors in the Mudejar and later Renaissance traditions reflect the styles favored by subsequent royals of Aragon and Spain.
Continue reading “Postcard from Zaragoza, Spain: Alma Mater and the Countless Martyrs”
The prominent promotion of culture and arts seemed paramount to Ahmad al-Muqadir (1046-1081) when he focused on the construction of his Aljaferia Palace on the banks of the Ebro River. Zaragoza was the capital of the taifa, or state, under his rule as part of the Banu Hud dynasty, and he wanted his “House of Joy” to reflect its greatness. Heirs to his kingdom followed suit, leaving architectural beauty behind that would influence regional styles for centuries ahead.
Continue reading “Postcard from Zaragoza, Spain: Palace celebrates the elevation of Moorish culture”