Cossío and the Misiones Pedagógicas

«This new incorporation to the Misiones, intends, as everything else,
to amuse and educate the intelligence of our people:
a Painting Gallery, that will be moving around different villages».
Manuel B. Cossío

Sala del Museo del Pueblo en una de las localidades donde tuvieron lugar las Misiones Pedagógicas, en la que se ven las copias de las obras La resurrección de Cristo, del Greco, El pelele, de Goya, y Las hilanderas, de Velázquez, hacia 1932. Residencia de Estudiantes, Madrid.

Misiones Pedagógicas was a project founded by Cossío and Luis Álvarez Santullano in 1931. It was, by far, Cossío’s most cherished pedagogical projects among those launched during the Second Republic. Misiones moved all around Spain bringing culture to the people living in the country and which, therefore, had no access to it. In other words, the Misiones could be understood as a travelling museum provided with copies of the most relevant pictures of the Spanish painting school (El Greco, Velazquez or Goya among others); it also made film screening sessions, theatre plays, and had music and a library.

The reformist spirit and innovative character of the ILE is reflected in the Misiones. The project congregates several key elements that served as a base for the many other plans. The main objective of all these projects was to foster culture in all its forms, including art awareness and enjoyment, so that Spain became a country with free and competent citizens.