The Museo Reina Sofía shares the new rehang of its Collection, the outcome of many years of research, work carried out by practically every department, and the incorporation of hundreds of works via donations, loans and purchases. This refurbishment project is presented to the public in successive episodes, spotlighting different strong points across the arrangement of the Collection. On this occasion, 18 new rooms are unveiled on the fourth floor of the Sabatini Building, bringing together themes such as US hegemony during the Cold War, exhibitions as a weapon of power for Francoism during developmentalism, the tourist boom, Latin America’s utopian response and feminist protest.
The atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 signalled the start of the period dubbed the Cold War, an era moulded by the predominance of the USA in the Western world. On this tense global chessboard, clashes were resolved to a large degree in the cultural sphere. Aware of the power of culture, exhibitions were used to redesign the new geopolitical stage, while artists and collectives refashioned their artistic devices as a form of resistance. Centring on how art is exhibited and received in different contexts — that is, its sociability — offers key information on the overriding discourses and sensibilities at a particular time, and also approaches that which remained outside and which is frequently more revealing. This focus unearths the role of art exhibition devices, seldom neutral and profoundly interwoven in tensions and the political, economic and social circumstances of the environment at which they are aimed.