The Joan Miró Foundation was the first public institution set up in Barcelona to focus entirely on contemporary art. Joan Miró and Josep Lluís Sert?the building?s designer and a founder member of GATCPAC (a leading group in the introduction of modern architecture in Catalonia)?first met in 1932 and became close friends while working on the Spanish (Republican) Pavilion at the ParisWorld Fair in 1937. After the first big retrospective of Miró?s work (1968), the artist had decided to set up a building to make his work accessible to the public on a permanent basis. Sert was commissioned and created an open-plan structure in which the interior space communicated with the exterior, producing a perfect balance between architecture and landscape. Since then, the Foundation has been expanded on two occasions. The architect commissioned to carry out this task was Jaume Freixa, a pupil of Sert's who had worked with him for eleven years at Harvard and had played an active part in the creation of the Foundation.
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