In the Founder’s Collection, new vitrines with different objects, like books, textiles or medals, some of which are not usually on display, show the crossovers of skills and trades between Istanbul and Venice around 1500. In the Modern Collection we are showing some of the paintings by Portuguese and British artists which the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation sent to Baghdad in the 1960s.
Our major exhibition in the Main Gallery, The Rise of Islamic Art, looks at the growing importance of art from the Middle East in the very years when the Ottoman Empire declined and the exploration of oil took off. This shown coincides with the 150th anniversary of the birth of Calouste Gulbenkian. This is followed in November with a show marking the 50th anniversary of the Museum building and its famous scenography, put into context with the reconstruction of projects by Albini, Bo Bardi, Scarpa, the Smithsons and Van Eyck.
Throughout the year, three projects– by Yto Barrada, Filipa César and Irineu Destourelles– visit Morocco, Guinea Bissau and Cape Verde. Three conversations bring together Roman archaeology and the sculpture of Francisco Tropa, the paintings of Sarah Affonso and folk art from the Minho region, Robin Fior and the radical tradition in graphic design.
In the new year, our summer guests are Portuguese artists, some of whom are jewelers. Reunited under the theme of contemporary jewelry in Portugal, they will present a new route through the Modern Collection, with the curatorship of Cristina Filipe.
Our New Year’s programme begins in February with a conference devoted to the changing of patterns of collecting in the early 20th century.