Construction work process
The intervention on the Pereda Building began in 2020 and will finish at the end of 2023 with the inauguration of a new cultural and leisure space.
During the first four months, during the initial phase of the project, the interior of the building was completely emptied. Paintings, sculptures, decorative elements and furniture of great historical and artistic relevance have been removed to protect them from the construction process.
The Adam-style piece weighs more than 700 kilograms and measures 7.50 x 14.50 metres. To remove it from the Council Room during the emptying of the building, 14 people were needed to fold, roll and pack it.
It arrived in Santander in 1962, together with the rest of the carpets that the Bank commissioned in 1958 from Miguel Stuyck, a manufacturer closely linked to the Royal Tapestry Factory in Madrid. It has adorned the Council Room ever since.
Of all the commissions, this was the most unique piece. It was woven with a density of 89,600 knots per square metre. The rest of the carpets made in the same factory were four times less dense, including those of the Royal Palace, which had 19,600 knots per square metre.
It was made as a single piece. A loom of exceptional size and hardness had to be made, using pine wood from Valsaín, in order to make it. Between 9 and 12 craftsmen were involved in its manufacture, designing the motifs of the six-colour design with exceptional realism.
This is one of the few carpets made in Spain with these characteristics that are still preserved. Both its technical specifications and the style of its design make it a piece of great historical and artistic value.
Since its establishment as the financial headquarters, the Pereda Building has housed a number of unique works of art from the Banco Santander Collection.
These pieces have formed part of the history of the interior of the building and are almost always related to the city of Santander. Among these pieces, we find one of the first depictions of the bay, by Matthäus Merian, or a mountain landscape by the renowned Cantabrian artist Agustín de Riancho.
Above all, the most outstanding works are those by an exceptional and unique artist in the history of art: José Gutiérrez Solana. Before the building was emptied, there were nine canvases by the painter in the Pereda building, all dating from the first half of the 20th century. They are only a part of those that make up the Banco Santander Collection. The Solana collection was started by Emilio Botín Sanz de Sautuola and later expanded by his son and successor, Emilio Botín. Its original conception is undoubtedly due to the common Cantabrian origin of the painter and the Botín family, as well as to the enormous quality of the artist.
Solana was the creator of an entire plastic universe. On the walls of the Pereda meeting rooms carnival scenes, bullfighting, the lumpen of his time and female scenes were depicted. All of which were dramatic and dark, with an absolutely original and unclassifiable style.
The Banco Santander Collection currently includes 34 works by José Gutiérrez Solana, the largest collection by the artist in the world. Maria José Salazar, an expert on the artist, has analysed each of them.
Click here to view the pieces in the collection
On May 20, the ceremony to lay the first stone of Espacio Pereda took place in Santander, during which Ana Botín inaugurated the works carried out on the historic building, which will soon evolve from being the financial headquarters to serving as a cultural reference site in Cantabria. The ceremony was also attended by the President of Cantabria, Miguel Ángel Revilla, and the Mayor of Santander, Gema Igual.
In her speech, the president made emotional references to her grandfather Emilio Botín-Sanz de Sautuola y López, and emphasized that this new space, by uniting culture and development, will become a place of encounter and innovation.
In order to preserve the history of this great building for future generations, a time capsule was created, into which Ana Botín inserted the following documents:
To represent the passage of time, Botín also added the daily issues of El Diario Montañés and Alerta, the video of the opening ceremony in which she visited the building for the last time before the works, and the Annual Report of the entity.
Click here for further details and images.