The Decorative Collection (1983-1989)

Stories of the Collection I

Untitled (1980) by Eduardo BatardaCulturgest - Fundação Caixa Geral de Depósitos

Eduardo Batarda

Untitled, 1980
Acrylic on canvas
118,5 x 80 cm
Acquisition 1983/02/25  
Inventory 211586
© José Fabião

Spanning the period from 1983 to the present day, Stories of the Collection summarises key moments in the formation of the Caixa Geral de Depósitos (CGD) Collection. Across distinct points and through the presentation of its most important acquisitions, we follow the desires, tastes, policies and circumstances of each specific moment of the collection’s development: The Decorative Collection (1983-89); The Art Collection (1990-97); Diversification (2000-04); Photographs (1991 and 2004); Precision (2004-08 and 2014); Prints (2007); Donations and Bequests (1967-2021); Resuming Acquisitions (2020-21); New Acquisitions: renowned artists (2022 and 2023); New Acquisitions: mid-career artists (2022 and 2023); Caixa Contest for Young Artists (2022 and 2023).

Offrande (1956) by Nadir AfonsoCulturgest - Fundação Caixa Geral de Depósitos

Nadir Afonso

Offrande, 1956
Oil on canvas
74 x 124 cm
Acquisition 1983/12/27  
Inventory 213275
© DMF, Lisbon, 2009

In 1982, Alberto Alves de Oliveira Pinto, a member of the CGD Board of Directors between 1980 and 1989, submitted a proposal to his fellow board members that the bank begin to play an active role in the field of culture, particularly in the visual arts. Criteria for the acquisition of a Decorative Collection were broadly outlined, including a focus on works of moderate value; adopting a discreet and non-interventionist stance in the market; respecting agreements between artists and galleries; favouring painting; and selecting a single work by each artist, except in the case of more renowned artists.

Untitled (1984) by MenezCulturgest - Fundação Caixa Geral de Depósitos


Untitled, 1984
Acrylic on canvas
133,5 x 161,6 cm
Acquisition 1985/05/27
Inventory 225021
© João Fabião

The Collection was entrusted to António Nelson Dias Antunes (Commercial Director of one of the Caixa Group companies), who proposed acquisitions to the Chairman for confirmation with the rest of the Board. By 1989, 310 works of painting, drawing, sculpture, tapestry and tiles and 388 graphic works (prints, serigraphs, lithographs) had been acquired from a diverse range of artists including Ângelo de Sousa, António Dacosta, Cruzeiro Seixas, Graça Morais, Pedro Portugal, Noronha da Costa, Joaquim Rodrigo, João Cutileiro, Mário Cesariny, and by the artists featured here: Eduardo Batarda, Nadir Afonso, Júlio Pomar, Menez and Paula Rego.

The mosquito's house (1984) by Paula RegoCulturgest - Fundação Caixa Geral de Depósitos

Paula Rego

The mosquito's house, 1984
Acrylic on canvas
242 x 179 cm
Acquisition 1988/11/14
Inventory 274969
© João Fabião

In 1989, the CGD Collection was shown publicly for the first time in two exhibitions, one at the Ministry of Finance building in Lisbon (April / May) as part of the celebrations of its bicentenary, and another at the Casa de Serralves in Porto (July / August). These events marked the end of this period of acquisitions and demonstrated the importance of the Collection in the Portuguese artistic context and the relevance of the works acquired.

L’énigme d’Oedipe (1978) by Júlio PomarCulturgest - Fundação Caixa Geral de Depósitos

Júlio Pomar

L’énigme d’Oedipe, 1978
Acrylic and textiles collage on canvas
97 x 130 cm
Acquisition 1985/09/25
Inventory 219114
© DMF, Lisbon

Credits: Story

Hugo Dinis
Lúcia Marques

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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