Centro Botín

Spain’s Renzo Piano–Designed Centro Botín to Open in June

Centro Botín, the new home for the arts and educational programming of Spain’s Fundación Botín, a private cultural foundation that supports social development in the region of Cantabria, announced that it will open its doors on June 23. The building is Pritzker Prize–winning architect Renzo Piano’s first completed project in Spain.

Directed by Fátima Sánchez, the 110,000-square-foot center is located in the historic Pereda Gardens in Santander, the capital of Cantabria. The gardens were restored by landscape designer Fernando Caruncho in collaboration with Renzo Piano. Centro Botín boasts 27,000 square feet of gallery space, a three-hundred-seat auditorium, classrooms, workspaces, a shop, a rooftop terrace, and a restaurant by two-star Michelin chef Jesús Sánchez.

Three exhibitions will inaugurate the space: a permanent sculptural intervention by Cristina Iglesias, a selection of works by Carsten Höller, and eighty Francisco Goya drawings from both the foundation’s and the Museo del Prado’s permanent collections. The arts program was developed by the foundation’s Visual Arts Advisory Committee, under the leadership of its president Vicente Todolí, the former director of Tate Modern, and its artistic director Benjamin Weil. Other members of the committee include Paloma Botín, Udo Kittelmann, Manuela Mena, and María José Salazar.

Centro Botín will allow the foundation to continue bringing major artists to Spain for exhibitions and its mentorship program. Among the artists who recently participated in the program are Joan Jonas, Julie Mehretu, Carlos Garaicoa, and Tacita Dean. The center will also provide space for arts educational activities created in collaboration with Yale University.

Iñigo Sáenz de Miera, director general of the Fundación Botín, said: “Building on our work in the community over the last fifty years, our vision for Centro Botín is to be one of Spain’s leading arts centers; a lively welcoming place for people to enjoy themselves, learn, and become inspired, and an engine for generating economic, social, and cultural wealth for the region of Cantabria and northern Spain.”