In the recently published report for 2017 of the Reina Sofía Museum, the purchase of work is reflected to 34 artists: 22 are pieces signed by men and 12 by women, representing 35% of acquisitions. Within those 34 names there are pieces by seven living Spanish artists and four Spanish ones (Mari Chordà Recasens, Eulàlia Grau, Ángela García Codoñer and Isabel Oliver). The national museum directed by Manuel Borja-Villel points with these numbers to a correction in the inequality in the field of acquisitions that had been taking place in the last five years, in which the collection has been getting fatter by the masculine side rather than by the feminine A tonic that is repeated in the world of art in general, according to the association Women in the Visual Arts (MAV).
In these five years, the museum has purchased the work of 55 living Spanish artists against 11 Spanish artists (16.6%), according to the museum's own data. The purchase method is as follows: first there is a pre-selection of the director or department of collections, which passes to the Board of Trustees and the last word is held by the Qualification, Valuation and Export Board of goods of the Ministry of Culture. In 2017, 930,335 euros were invested in the purchase of art; in 2016, 1,059,463 euros; in 2015, 1,446,876 euros; in 2014, 286,516 euros; and in 2013, 1,033,651 euros. In 2016, the work of 35 creators (living and dead) was acquired: 27 men and 8 women (22.8%). In the previous year, there were 41 men compared to 9 women (18%). In 2014, 16 men and 5 women (23.8%). And in 2013, percentage fell to 16.6% (25 vs. 5).
From the Reina Sofía point out that the museum promotes from the different areas of its performance "the vindication of the feminine artistic practice, as well as the adequate integration of the feminist discourse." They assure that one of their "priority action lines" is "to recover and make visible the work of women artists unjustly disdained, "but also" restore the memory of ideas, knowledge and feminist discourses. "In addition to shopping, from the museum highlight the importance of donations and deposits of creators.
María José Magaña, president of the association, explains that the Equality Law must be complied with and that is why "purchases of women in museums should be reinforced". That issue was one of the central issues of 'Being a woman and an artist in Spain, a test of survival?', A forum organized by the Foundation for Research and Business Law (FIDE), where data came to light. that in the last edition of ARCO Madrid, only 84 of 1,323 artists were women and Spanish, 6% of the total. Marina Núñez (Palencia, 1966), artist and teacher, explained that in her class women are 70% and when leaving the faculty and entering the professional world the percentage is reversed. Rafael Mateu de Ros, founding partner of Ramón y Cajal Abogados, assured in that forum that the Law of Equality is not fulfilled in the world of plastic arts because although the norm is binding in terms of public money, "museums are organisms autonomous publics ". "The case of Reina Sofía is insulting, because the banner of its programming is the new left and women are not interested," said Semíramis González, artistic director of the JUSTMAD and JUSTLX fairs.
The contemporary art market specialist Marta Pérez Ibáñez, a professor at the Antonio de Nebrija University, believes that no museum is on the margins of the market, "Reina Sofía either." "The galleries do not bet on women and their revaluation is doubtful. The museum is capable of changing this entrenched inertia, "he adds. He coincides in his reading with gallerist Pilar Serra, after 27 years at the helm of his business. "Even those of us who are very aware have a long way to go, because there is more distrust of women artists," she says. And he points out an alarming fact: "Women are given lower prices than men and that we must rectify. Watch less because they expose less, because they are less visible, because they are less valued ... ".
To the artist Concha Jerez (Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, 1941) Reina Sofía bought her work in 2012. In a telephone conversation, she believes that the national museum "must commit to the Equality Law". National Prize of Plastic Arts 2015 and Prize Velázquez 2017, demands a greater will of change: "The public institutions should give example to the market with the public money". "Equality is an obligation."