The Foundation building was designed by Josep Lluís Sert, architect, co-founder of the GATCPAC (Grup d’Arquitectes i Tècnics Catalans per al Progrés de l’Arquitectura Contemporània) and a close friend of Joan Miró. It was built on land provided by the City Council in the Parc de Montjuïc.
Towards the end of the 1960s, Sert and Miró began working on the idea of a “Miró Museum” on the site. From the outset, the Foundation was designed in accordance with the principles of Rationalist architecture, with different spaces set around a central patio in the traditional Mediterranean style and with Sert’s characteristic skylights. Designed to house the Miró collection, more than thirty years after it was opened the building has also demonstrated its capacity and adaptability for displaying the work of other artists of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries and continues to be an emblematic example of contemporary architecture.
In 1988 it was enlarged so as to gain more exhibition space, provide room for new services and relocate the offices. The extension was designed by Jaume Freixa, a friend and pupil of Sert.
Works by Joan Miró
The Foundation’s collection currently comprises over 14,000 pieces: 217 paintings, 178 sculptures, 9 textiles, 4 ceramics, the almost complete graphic works and some 8,000 drawings.
The major part of this collection was donated to the Foundation by Joan Miró himself. Other pieces have come from the collections owned by Pilar Juncosa, the artist’s wife, and Joan Prats, his close friend and the driving force behind the idea of setting up the Foundation. There have been subsequent donations by Marguerite and Aimé Maeght, Pierre Matisse, Manuel de Muga, Josep Lluís Sert, Francesc Farreras, Josep Royo, Gérald Cramer and David Fernández Miró, grandson of the artist.
An equally valuable part of the Foundation’s holdings consists of the works on loan, mainly from members of the Miró family and from the Gallery K. AG founded by Kazumasa Katsuta.