Design & Decoration S03 ep15 : Artur Ramon, Ramon Drawing Picture Gallery, [Spain]
Interview with Artur Ramon
Artur Ramon is the fourth generation of a family of antique dealers whose business began in the 1920s and set up shop in Barcelona in 1942. In spite of being generalists, ARTUR RAMON ART have always paid a great deal of attention to antique drawing, especially 17th- to 19th-century Spanish and Italian drawings, with five biannual exhibitions under the generic title "Raíz del Arte" ("The Roots of Art", 1993-2003) culminating with the monographic exhibition "El papel del dibujo en España" ("The Role of Drawing in Spain"), in association with the Caylus gallery in Madrid (2006). The catalogues from these exhibitions are regarded as essential to the understanding of Spanish drawing. Artur Ramon is exhibiting at the Salon du Dessin, Paris, since 2009. Artur Ramon has offered his drawings to private collectors from Spain and abroad, as well as to such museums and institutions as the Museo del Prado and the Musée du Louvre."
We are a family business, it is starting my great grandfather in beginning of 20th Century in a small
village near Barcelona and then in 1942 we just started a gallery in Barcelona with my father and
now my sister and myself.
We have been generalistic dealers at the beginning but I have been myself more specialised on
works on paper. We have been working for more than 20 years with exhibitions and selling to the
best collections and museums all around the world.
I was thinking to be a journalist, to be a writer. I spent a summer in Rome looking at all the
museum all the churches all the art and finally I decide you know I want to be into the art world.
And because of the family tradition for me I had an open door so it was easy to be there.
My father what he really wanted is for me to have a better background than he had so he sent me to
first to study English in Cambridge in London then I done … educational studies in London as well
also I made art history there at the University of Barcelona to have a really good background not
only by intuition or what normally the dealers have done in the past, but to be an art historian
that’s doing that as well.
When I came to Sotheby’s … studies the director was John Wilton-Ealey who was the great expert
on Pironezi the printer in the 18th Century of the great names in prints so I became a pupil of him
then I came to old master drawings and modern and finally to arrive here which is the best
platform. Here and Paris as well that I’m in the … all the great fair for drawings.
It’s very important to have these sort of breaches between scholars and art market that in the Anglo
Saxon world it’s very common but in my world in the Mediterranean and then this culture is just
too (they don’t want to tell anything, information is power) that’s it. I can’t understand, I think it’s
a sort of an intellectual purism that say you are in the market, you don’t know nothing but you earn
a lot of money, I’m at the university, I know a lot but I don’t earn money so it’s sort of a complex
and we have to make it fluid the national heritage, the university, the dealers, … all together.
We just buy what we like if you do that you can pass your passion to the clients that they are other
collectors and then behind the words is all a world you have to study not only is art is the
philosophy of the moment, the history the literature so it’s full of connections and this is an ocean.
The beginning of all the process in art is starting normally with the drawings with paper, is what
Michelangelo said is the root of art, is more direct, more spontaneous and then you can have the
first voice of the artist.
The problem normally with papers is that in the art history tradition normally they were just steps
for paintings and all the artists they were working with them and they are not really well kept, the
light has damaged a lot of works on paper during the history.
I remember a very young Rela Bieho which is one of the great Spanish 16th and 17th Century
artists that I found it in a small sale in England and it went to the Bibliotheque A'Nationale or I
had the most beautiful Spanish drawing in the 17th Century which is the female nude by Alon
Chocano that I sold to the Prado
The only artist that can explain all 20th Century is Picasso but then we have M… which is a poet
and Dali was one of the great realistic artists so the 20th Century has been really amazing to bring
these Spanish artists and then they have been you know working because of our situation, the war
and after the 40 years of shadow they have been working abroad fortunately.
My father he met Dali he met Miro not Picasso and now we are still having in touch with the best
artists of Spain, I’m a close friend of Mikalos L… the greatest artist I think is the man who is
following the path of Picasso, we’re really close friends.
After the Civil War Spain was very important in informalist in abstract paintings but this not well
known in international market and so I wanted to show the best works in the 60’s by artists like
M…, S… F… but they were the Group Il Paso in Madrid and then in Cateloni in Milan we have
Tapias who is still alive is one of the greatest abstract artists, he made exhibitions also in New
York with Martha Jackson at the same year we have that painting there he made an exhibition at
the Guggenheim Museum in New York so they’re really great artist that unfortunately they have
been not very well recognised so I think one of my contributions to the fair is to bring this art,
Spanish art, and to show what we are and what we are doing.
OFFICIAL WEBSITE: Artur Ramon, Ramon Drawing Pictures Gallery, Spain