Abelló Museum, Mollet del Vallès, Spain

The Abelló Museum (Spanish: Museu Abelló), located in Mollet del Vallès (near of Barcelona). is a municipal art museum located in Mollet del Vallès, in El Vallès Oriental. Opened on 29 March 1999, its principal collection comprises pieces from artist and collector Joan Abelló, which donated his collection to the city in 1996, creating the Joan Abelló Foundation, an independent organisation of the Mollet del Vallès Town Council. The museum is located in an Art Nouveau-style building from 1908.

The Abelló Museum is a municipal art museum located in Mollet del Vallès, in the Vallès Oriental. Abelló Museum’s initial collection is formed by the funds of the artist and art collector Joan Abelló, who gave the city in 1996, giving rise to the Joan Abelló Foundation, a autonomous body of the City Council of Mollet del Vallès. At the moment, the Joan Abelló Municipal Foundation also manages the Menhir de Mollet, located in the courtyard of the Can Mulà Municipal Library.

The museum is located inside a modernist building built in 1908, of which only the façade is preserved, after an internal renovation made during the 1990s. It is located on Berenguer III carrer núm. 122, although it also occupies its backyard, limited by the streets Àngel Guimerà and Lluís Duran, in the Mollet station of France Station. It is one of the most important residential buildings that were built at the beginning of the 20th century in the municipality, due to its size and design. It was used as barracks of the Civil Guard until the 80’s.

The building consists of three floors and a basement. Initially, each plant had two houses, and the basement was used as a horseback and later as a dungeon. Currently, the first two plants are occupied by the permanent collection, while on the ground floor there is the temporary exhibition hall and the space known as L’Aparador. In the basement, there is a space where courses, conferences and micro-exhibitions are given. In this floor there is also a didactic space with audiovisual material with information about Joan Abelló. The building also has different services, such as a rest area for visitors, a store and reception service.

When it was cataloged in 1984, its ornamental features, such as moldings and railings of wrought iron, as well as its composition, typical of nineteenth-century residential architecture of the early 20th century, were highlighted. During the 1990s reform, the total demolition of the building was carried out, except for the two facades, protecting them from the works by means of a total detachment, with an auxiliary structure of detachable iron tube.

In addition to the museum itself, the museum space has several infrastructures linked to the institution, such as the Documentation Center, the Showcase and the Museum’s House of Painter.

Casa Museo del Pintor:
It is the house where Abelló was born. Over the years, the painter bought some adjacent houses to fit his entire private collection of art, turning the house into a house-museum. The house can be visited through concerted visits. Here we find outstanding collections of glass, ceramics, baroque sculpture, sacred art, furniture, painting … and names like Dalí, Picasso, Tàpies, Brossa, Opisso, Mir, Fortuny, Gimeno, Manolo Hugué, Domingo …

Documentation Center:
The Museum Documentation Center is located in the building adjacent to it, along with the catering department. The museum has a large documentary and biographical collection with information on the different artistic movements and biographies of the most important artists. In total there are about 3,000 letters and manuscripts, approximately 7,000 photographs and transparencies and 2,000 articles, as well as graphic documentation about Abelló. There is also an extensive collection of catalogs, based on the exchanges held between the museums of Catalonia and throughout the state. The museum also has documentary resources specific to Dalí, Pellicer, Pere Pruna, Hugué, Blasco Ferrer, Oscar Domínguez and Joan Brossa, among others. You need to schedule time to visit this documentation center.

The Showcase:
The Abelló museum has its own space for the production and diffusion of visual arts, known as L’Aparador. This space, also located in the building annexed to the museum, on the street of Àngel Guimerà, aims to promote the work of emerging artists, using the physical space, designed as a commercial showcase, with a glass case, trying thus crossing the walls of the museum and arriving at pedestrians. These are some of the projects carried out:

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Cycle Oriol Fontdevila (2010): How to turn a museum into sand. First intervention by Oriol Vilanova.

Cycle David Armengol (2008-2009): OBSESSIONS. Examples of redundancy and cyclical persistence. Interventions by artists such as Zink Tank, Lucía Lara, Samuel Labadie, Fito Conesa, Efén Álvarez, Fran Meana, Ana García Pineda, among others.

Ciclo Mercè Alsina (2005-2007): Confluences in an interval or Maps in memory. Interventions for positions by artists such as Consol Rodríguez, Katrin Korfmann, Lluís Bisbe, Cecília Cerdeira, Enric Maurí, Christiane Forstnig, Albert Bayona, Carlos Pazos, Mariane Sarraute, David Ymbernon, among others.

Permanent exhibition:
On the first floor of the Museum, under the title Modern art in the Abelló collection, nineteenth and twentieth centuries, there is an outstanding selection of paintings and sculptures, which allow you to take a tour of the history of art from late seventeenth century until the seventies, mainly through Catalan and Spanish artists. These works were given by Abelló himself in the town of Mollet. They exhibit works by artists such as Ramon Casas, Modest Cuixart, Salvador Dalí, Joan Miró, Pablo Picasso, Tàpies, as well as Abelló’s own works. It is arranged chronologically from the end of the nineteenth century until the period of pictorial maturity of Abelló himself, using Catalan art as a thread.

Abelló’s work is exhibited on the second floor, with the title of Llenguatges.

The collection, entitled Modern art from the Abelló collection, 19th-20th centuries, has more than 5,000 works of art, especially Catalan paintings from the 19th and 20th centuries. The collection boasts works from such artists as Ramon Casas, Modest Cuixart, Salvador Dalí, Joan Miró, Pablo Picasso and Antoni Tàpies, in addition to Abelló’s own works. The museum also shows a collection of Romanesque and Baroque sculpture, as well as Asian and African art. Noteworthy pieces

Isidre Nonell – Porta de l’estudi and Cap d’home
Ramon Casas – Esbós per a l’anunci d’Anís del Mono
Darío de Regoyos – Víctimas de la fiesta (1894)
Josep Llimona – Melangia
Joan Ponç i Bonet – Dau al Set (1949)
Manolo Hugué – Torero (1937)
Pancho Cossio – Still life
Joaquim Mir – Coves de Mallorca
Joan Brossa – Experimental poem (1947)
Ismael Smith – Appeal

The museum has a range of educational services specific to schools, designing visits and workshops aimed at different levels of education, both at the permanent collection and temporary exhibitions. It also has a set of activities designed for family visits, framed in the program L’art is a game in the Abelló Museum. During the month of July of 2010 it received the sign of commitment of tourist quality, granted by the Consortium of Tourism of the Western Vallès.

The Museum also has a multisensory module called “The Tactile Look”, a tactile interpretation space aimed at everyone but specially adapted and designed for those visitors who have some types of visual, blindness or reduced mobility.

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