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Natural Histories. A Project by Miguel Ángel Blanco

Museo Nacional del Prado. Madrid 11/19/2013 - 4/27/2014

The Museo del Prado opened its doors to the public for the first time as the Museo Nacional de Pinturas y Esculturas [National Museum of Paintings and Sculptures] on 19 November 1819. However, the Neo-classical building designed by Juan de Villanueva that now houses the Prado was originally the home of the Natural History Collection, commissioned by Charles III in 1785. On the 194th anniversary of the Museum’s founding and to coincide with the 200th anniversary of the death of Villanueva, this project by Miguel Ángel Blanco now pays homage to the Prado’s history and to the little known origins of its building as a Natural History museum.The Madrid born Blanco, who is one of the principal Spanish artists directly associated with nature, emphasises the Museum’s historical side through 22 interventions that aim to fuse art and nature, located in the galleries of the Permanent Collection. Animal, vegetable and mineral objects selected by Blanco from Spanish natural history collections such as those of the Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales, the Real Jardín Botánico and the Museo de la Farmacia Histórica, establish a dialogue with the paintings and sculptures in the Museum and “intervene” to take the visitor on a new “scientific-artistic” expedition. Leaflet of the exhibition (archive pdf, 852K)


Room 74, 57, 51A, 56B, 56A, 55B, 55A, 1, 40, 51, 24, 8A, 29, 16B, 12, 16A, 90, 47, 67, Patio del Ábside

Opening time

Monday to Saturday from 10am to 8pm. Sunday and holidays from 10am to 7pm



With the collaboration of:
Comunidad de Madrid
Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales



Miguel Ángel Blanco

Miguel Ángel Blanco
Miguel Ángel Blanco

Miguel Ángel Blanco is among the best known of Spanish artists associated directly with nature. For some years he lived in the Sierra de Guadarrama, which has been his preferred artistic terrain and was the subject of an exhibition he held at La Casa Encendida in Madrid in 2006 entitled Visions of Guadarrama. Miguel Ángel Blanco and the pioneering artists of the Sierra. In that event his book-boxes established a dialogue with works by the leading Spanish landscape painters who visited this mountainous area in the 19th century with the aim of depicting it in their works.

Miguel Ángel Blanco has exhibited different selections from the Forest Library, his most important project, at the Biblioteca Nacional de España, the Museo Nacional de la Estampa in Mexico City, the Fundación César Manrique in Lanzarote, the Calcografía Nacional, Madrid, and the Abbey of Santo Domingo de Silos (Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía), among other venues. In 2008 the Ministry of Culture commissioned a project from him in memory of the dead beech tree in the garden of the Fundación Lázaro Galdiano, which presented the temporary exhibition Fallen Tree, focusing on the relationship between the tree and time.

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