Public University of Navarra, Pamplona, Spain

Public University of Navarre: Artistic Heritage Collection. Despite its recent creation in 1987, the Public University of Navarre has a very clear mission: to contribute to society’s progress through the creation and transmission of knowledge and the promotion of culture, facilitating the integral development of its members. In keeping with this mission, we believe that the university community should enmesh itself in the Arts and in Culture so that it may know, cultivate and value them. The main campus of the University was designed and built by one of the most distinguished 20th century-Spanish architects, Francisco Javier Saiz de Oiza (1918-2000), who was always devoted to teaching and creation. The scenery itself is already a work of art.

Since 1990, when the University received a donation of a drawing by Rafael Alberti, it has acquired an interesting collection of works of sculpture, painting, drawing, engraving, serigraphy and photography. It has focused on contemporary Spanish artists, and it has displayed a special interest for our cultural surroundings. The collection consists of more than a hundred works on display in offices, meeting rooms, open spaces and cafeterias.

The University also holds temporary exhibits that place on display the art of young artists who bring to our halls their most recent work. In this way, the University is transforming itself into a large, open museum, accessible to everybody in Navarre, and from now on with an open window to the rest of the world.

From its beginnings, the Public University of Navarre showed its commitment to the Art when beginning an own artistic Collection, that has a fundamentally contemporary character and with outstanding presence of Navarrese authors or settled in Navarre. The germ of the Collection took place in 1990, with the pen drawing that Rafael Alberti made of one of his characteristics “pigeons” and dedicated to the University after his visit. Since then, through acquisitions, donations and commissions, has been forming a Collection that is exposed, for the most part, in university units.

One of the frameworks that determine the current development of the University is the achievement of the International Campus of Excellence, along with the universities of Zaragoza, Lleida and La Rioja. The Campus of Excellence must also foster the excellence of the environments, and Art is an element whose symbolic capacity can help, as it has done in the past, to confront the economic, social and technical complexities of present and future times.

In this sense, the University attaches the greatest importance not only to the conservation of the artistic heritage but also to the creation, which has been fostered through the acquisition of the works that make up the Collection, and to the aesthetic education of the university community and the society in general, through its diffusion.

Thus, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of its creation, the Public University of Navarra organized an exhibition that gathered a selection of the funds of its Collection of Contemporary Art. In the second half of 2012, the exhibition was visited at the Gustavo de Maeztu Museum in Estella, the María Forcada Foundation in Tudela and the Navarra Museum in Pamplona. The initiative to carry, for the first time in the history of the University, the university artistic funds to three museums of Navarre had as objective to bring the university heritage to the Navarrese society of which it nourishes and in whose service it develops its functions of teaching, research and university extension, as the Parliament of Navarre determined in its Law of Creation, 1987.

The UPNA has also published several publications to publicize its artistic heritage:

“Artistic heritage of the Public University of Navarra” (2002):
“Collection of Contemporary Art Garaikedoko Bilduma Art Acquisitions 2007-2011 Erosketak 2007-2011” (2011):
“Arteosadia-Ausartedia” (2012). Guide to UPNA’s public artistic work by Professor Irene López Goñi:
Art-and-Entertainment (2012)
“Painting and University UPNA Collection on its 25th anniversary.” Painting eta Unibertsitatea NUP bilduma bere 25 urteurrenean “(2012).