May
27
Mon
2019
History Talk 27 May: The Franco Years and the Restoration of Democracy @ Espai la Senieta, Moraira
May 27 @ 10:30 – 12:30

Date:  27th May 2019 10:30

Location: Salón de Actos, Espai la Senieta, Moraira (next to the large free car park)

Subject: The Franco Years and the Restoration of Democracy

Lecturer: Alan Oliver

The Civil War ended on 1st April 1939.  The German and Italian forces that supported Franco left Spain after the Victory Parade in Madrid. Franco consolidated his rule through the Falange, and constantly changing his government ministers. It was effectively a one party fascist state, with the Catholic Church playing a major role.

Franco had a historic meeting with Hitler in 1940, when no agreement was reached.

After WW2 Spain became increasingly isolated by the democracies but received economic support from Argentina. Eventually, at the height of the cold war, the Americans offered Franco a loan in return for bases. Thereafter, the Spanish economy slowly improved.

Franco agreed with Don Juan, the Spanish pretender to the throne, that his son Juan Carlos would be educated under Franco’s control, in an attempt to persuade Juan Carlos to accept the Falange doctrine, and ultimately to succeed Franco on his death.

When Franco died in 1975, Juan Carlos was quickly crowned, but immediately moved towards establishing a democratic government and a constitutional monarchy. In February 1982, an attempted army coup was denounced by the King who appeared on television, and stated that Spain was now a democracy. He has remained very popular in Spain as a result of this action.

In 1986 under the Socialist Government of Gonzales, Spain joined the EU, and rapid economic development occurred. More recently, since joining the euro, and after the financial crisis of 2008, the economy has declined with high unemployment especially amongst young people, The country has huge debts both at national and comunidad level. Juan Carlos abdicated in 2014 as a result of failing health and declining popularity. His son  is now King Filipe VI, Recently, the Spanish political scene has been dominated by the issue of Catalan independence.

Further reading

The Franco Years and the Restoration of Democracy

  • Hooper   John  (2006)                   The New Spaniards       Penguin Books
  • Preston   Paul  (1995)                    Franco                             Fontana Press
  • Preston  Paul    (2004)                   Juan Carlos                     Harper Collins
Jun
10
Mon
2019
History Talk 10th June: History of The Bicycle @ Espai la Senieta, Moraira
Jun 10 @ 10:30 – 12:30

Date: 10th June 2019

Location: Salón de Actos, Espai la Senieta, Moraira (next to the large free car park)

Subject: The History of The Bicycle – Not Intended for Biking Enthusiasts!

Lecturer: John Hopwood

This will be a light-hearted but informative talk on the history of bicycles.

It will include details of the earliest known forms of bicycle through to the latest developments as well as some surprising details concerning the best selling vehicle in the world – the Chinese Flying Pigeon with more than five hundred million produced since it was first introduced in 1950.

The talk will also include some irreverent looks at those MAMILS (Middle Aged Men in Lycra Tights!) we see hobbling round the local coffee bars.

Jun
24
Mon
2019
Art and History Talk: The Art of Illustration @ Teatro, Espai la Senieta
Jun 24 @ 10:30 – 12:30
Art and History Talk: The Art of Illustration @ Teatro, Espai la Senieta

Date: Monday 24th June 2019 10:30

Location: Salón de Actos, Espai la Senieta, Moraira (next to the large free car park)

Subject: The Art of Illustration

Lecturer: Brian Nicholls

Due to a rather curious snobbery in the Art World, Illustrators are often regarded as some sort of lesser being than ‘real’ artists. 

The only way that this could be quantified is that Art should be driven purely by emotional interaction with the subject matter whereas the illustrator is offered a commission to illustrate a particular subject. 

In terms of skill, creativity, craftsmanship, technique and quality there is no difference.

Many famous artists in history, such as Toulouse Lautrec have accepted commissions to produce commercial work. Toulouse-Lautrec is just one notable example.  

It is true that a lot of pedestrian, boring and uninteresting work is produced primarily for the advertising industry. This tends to overshadow the huge volume of highly talented work that is produced by illustrators in many other areas.

In this revised talk I will take a brief historical look at the early, often very funny, educational illustrations of the mid 19th century and then move on to cover more modern work in the Publishing, Historical, Political, Graphic and Children’s book areas.

 

Sep
30
Mon
2019
Art Talk: Outdoor Art in Spain @ Salon de Actos
Sep 30 @ 10:30 – 12:30

Lecturer: Peter Atkinson

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The presentation will explore a national selection of the art that can be viewed in Spain’s outdoors, covering the work of A-listers and unknowns.  It will range from whole buildings  (religious, civic and residential) to minor architectural details, and will include art that is transient or trivial as well as the monumental and permanent.  We’ll look at bells, clocks, fountains and streetlights; at saints, pilgrims, crosses and cloisters; and at local and national heroes.

Banksy has said that “art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable”.   A few of the items that we look at may meet one or both of these lofty aspirations.  Less ambitiously, I hope you’ll find all the work to be pleasing or interesting.

Oct
14
Mon
2019
Art and History Talk: The Double Life & Amazing works of Grayson Perry @ Salón de Actos, Espai la Senieta, Moraira
Oct 14 @ 10:30 – 12:00
Art and History Talk: The Double Life & Amazing works of Grayson Perry @ Salón de Actos, Espai la Senieta, Moraira

Date: Monday 14th October 2019 10:30

Location: Salón de Actos, Espai la Senieta, Moraira (next to the large free car park)

Subject: The Double life and Amazing Works of Grayson Perry

Lecturer: John Hopwood

 

It would be very difficult to find another artist anywhere near as colourful and as eccentric as Grayson Perry!

He suffered an extremely traumatic childhood during which he discovered his penchant for wearing women’s clothes.

This was followed by times of being a penniless young ‘punk’ living in a squat in London.

However, he chose his fellow squatters well with one being Stephen Jones, now probably the most respected, radical and important milliner of the 20th and early 21st centuries and the other Boy George who needs little introduction.

During this time Perry decided to become an artist and his studies were eventually rewarded with a BA from Portsmouth Polytechnic in 1982.

He started his career as a very controversial ‘Transvestite Potter’, but he has since become a Turner-Prize-winning artist – the only potter ever to receive that award – a BAFTA-winning documentary maker, an author, a social commentator, a museum curator, a Reith lecturer and a devoted husband and father.

In addition to his celebrated pottery creations Grayson Perry is also a creator of the most wonderful and colourful tapestries woven on Flemish looms and of minutely detailed large scale etchings.

He is a consummate self-publicist, which may have been necessary at the beginning of his career, but no longer now that he is one of the most well-known British artists alive.

This talk is full of humour, of pathos and occasionally, perhaps, what may be considered by some, rather offensive works of this amazing and utterly unique artist.

Oct
28
Mon
2019
Art & History Talk: Chicanery in Art @ Espai la Senieta
Oct 28 @ 10:30 – 12:30
Art & History Talk: Chicanery in Art @ Espai la Senieta

Lecturer: Rosalind Miranda

The Art World, when you look into it, must be one of the strangest institutions that exists today. It is fuelled on the one hand by greed, by people who want to make money; and on the other hand by gullibility, by people who are too willing to believe what they hope might be true.

Many injustices exist in the Art World. If you don’t have a name that is recognized, it is very difficult to get more than a small amount for your work . . . if, that is, you can manage to sell it at all. Sign the same painting with a famous name and it might sell for more than the GNP of a small nation.

We will look at some of the things that can determine the amount for which a work of art might sell; at some things that are being passed off as “art”; at some of the hoaxes that have been put over on the public; and at some of the best art forgers.

Nov
11
Mon
2019
History Talk: A journey through the fascinating history of the “Royal Town” of Xàbia/Jávea
Nov 11 @ 10:30 – 12:30
History Talk: A journey through the fascinating history of the “Royal Town” of Xàbia/Jávea

Lecturer: Angela Chantry

Subject: A journey through the fascinating history of the“Royal Town” of Xàbia / Jávea.

 

The presentation takes a journey through the fascinating history of Jávea, revealing that the town had a place in events belonging to the great history of Spain: from the rock paintings in the caves of the Montgó; the Roman salt works; the Muslim farmers who lived and worked in settlements on the terraced farm land; El Cid’s landing by sea; Phillip III who granted Jávea the status of “Royal Town”; the attacks by pirates; the booming raisin industry – Jávea has a very interesting past and it was not until 1981 that the town really began to take part in Spain’s booming tourist industry.

Nov
25
Mon
2019
History Talk: Intersecting Lives JFK and LBJ
Nov 25 @ 10:30 – 12:30
History Talk: Intersecting Lives JFK and LBJ

Lecturer: Peter Atkinson

Title: Intersecting Lives: John Fitzgerald Kennedy and Lyndon Baines Johnson

While attempting throughout to separate reality from myth, I shall look at the lives, personalities and careers of the two men and at the difficult relationship between them.  They had very different backgrounds, the privileged New Englander and the humbler Texas farm boy, and each had significant strengths and deep flaws.  The presentation will range across more than half a century but there will be some emphasis on the 60s, the decade of their presidencies, when the principal issues were the cold war, civil rights, Vietnam, and the assassination and its aftermath.  It is a story of two fascinating individuals living through interesting and challenging times.