Pablo Beltrán de Heredia Collection


Producer: Pablo Beltrán de Heredia

Geographic Area: Spain

Related Collections: Julio Maruri Collection - Westerdahl – Domínguez CollectionMiguel Logroño Collection

Related Topics: La Escuela de AltamiraSurrealism

Related Exhibitions: The Idea of ArtLa sombra recobrada. Pablo Beltrán de Heredia

The writer, publisher and cultural promoter Pablo Beltrán de Heredia (Gran Canaria, 1917 - Santander, 2009) graduated in Philosophy and Arts from the Universidad Central de Madrid. Among his many activities and occupations he was vice-rector of the Centro Coordinador de Bibliotecas (Library Coordination Center) in Santander, founder member of the Escuela de Altamira, teacher of geography and history at the José María de Pereda secondary school, member of the Museo del Prado board of trustees, director of cultural activities of the Fundación Santillana, and professor in the Department of Spanish at the University of Texas at Austin.

The intense political dimension of Pablo Beltrán de Heredia’s activity was marked by his close links to José María Gil Robles, whose works he published, and his support for the monarchic aspirations of John of Bourbon and Battenberg. Most of the documentation generated by his political and academic activity is conserved at the Universidad de Navarra. LAFUENTE ARCHIVE conserves material from the cultural side of his life, in which Beltrán de Heredia was a prominent member and active supporter of Imprenta Bedia, the publishing house that played a crucial role in disseminating 20th century Spanish poetry. Imprenta Bedia was famed for the exquisite formal quality of its publications and promoted numerous collections, including “Viento Sur”, “Cantalapiedra”, “Clásicos de todos los años” and “Colofón del año”. Among the outstanding books of which he was author may be found El doctor Díaz Caneja y su tertulia (1990), Memorias de Monte Corbán (1997), El magisterio de Menéndez Pelayo (2001) and Ricardo Gullón en el recuerdo (2001).

In the final years of his life, Beltrán de Heredia formed a close friendship with José María Lafuente, and on his death in August 2009 Lafuente inherited his personal archive, which illustrated in great detail Beltrán de Heredia’s intense activity as an academic and publisher. The Lafuente Archive had already acquired a small yet significant section of the archive in May 2002. It was the piece relating to the meetings, or Encuentros, and activities of the Escuela de Altamira, an organization in which Beltrán de Heredia’s participation had been fundamental. Held in 1949 and 1950, these meetings set out to promote exchanges between Spanish and international artists, with a view to recovering and revitalizing Spain’s artistic avant-garde. Beltrán de Heredia’s documentary records included a number of artworks and, alongside them, exchanges of correspondence, ephemeral printed matter, manuscripts and all kinds of documentation and catalogs about the artists and intellectuals who took part in the Encuentros.