LAW BY DECREE n. º 149/90
10TH May

The Portuguese State understood the urgency to witness the national recognition of the artistic genius of the painters Maria Helens Vieira da Silva and her husband, Arpad Szenes, whose work is poorly represented in the public collections that the country has. The most suitable way to do this is, undoubtedly, creating a Museum where, in addition to a regular display of the work of these two artists, works as a known study Centre, devoted primarily to research and disseminate it.

The purpose of given tribute to these two important figures, whose work contains such significant connections to the Portuguese cultural environment of this century, joined from the beginning the Lisbon Municipality, the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, the Luso-American Foundation for the Development and the City of Lisbon Foundation, playing a major role in the project, which is, now, possible to materialize.

The painter Maria Helena Vieira da Silva endorses this initiative, especially by the opportunity it represents to perpetuate the memory and the work of her husband, Arpad Szenes, is available to collaborate as much as possible.

It was thought that the best way to assure the creation and operation of the museum and centre and to fulfil the purpose behind it would be to bring together the will of the Portuguese State and the entities already mentioned, in charge of pursuing those ends.

The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, although does not intervene as a Founder, by reasons having to do with internal rules and policy action, gives a very important contribution to the creation of the museum.

Caloust Gulbenkian’s president will, indeed, appear as the founder, its president Dr José de Azeredo Perdigão, whose involvement in the whole process revealed to be of inestimable value.

The building of the old Silk Tissue Fabric, in Praça das Amoreiras, property of Lisbon Municipality, will provide its participation for the Foundation patrimony.

The costs of providing this building in question to the museum and Foundation headquarters, which involves the replacement of its current occupants, will provide the contribution of the City of Lisbon Foundation.


Pursuant to paragraph a), from number 1 to the article 2001º from the Constitution, the Government decrees the following:

Article 1st Is hereby established by the state, the Municipality of Lisbon, by Dr. José de Azeredo Perdigão, by the Luso-American Foundation for the Development and the City of Lisbon Foundation a Foundation called Arpad-Szenes-Vieira da Silva.

Article 2nd The Foundation is a private institution with public utility, with legal representation, will last indefinitely, have it headquarters in Lisbon, in the Old Silk Textiles Fabric, and will be governed by the following statutes:

Art. 3rd The Foundation aims to promote the dissemination and study the art work of Maria Helena Vieira da Silva and Arpad Szenes, to which should proceed to the creation of a Museum and a documentation and research centre, dedicated to the work of both artists.

Art. 4th The Foundation patrimony consists of the assets set out in article 3 of this statue.

Art. 5th

1- The state will assure an annual subsidy destinated to the ordinary expenses of maintenance and upkeep the museum and centre.

2- The granting of subsidies under the previous paragraph is subjected to approval by the court of auditors.

Art. 6th The donations given to the Foundation will automatic benefit from the procedures established in nº 2 of 40th article of the Code of Income Tax of legal Persons, approved by Decree- Law nº. 442-B/88 of November 30th, and paragraph 2 Article 56 of the Code of Income Tax of Individuals, approved by Decree- Law nº. 442-A/88 of same date.

Art. 7th The present statue is a sufficient basis for registration of land and properties registration matrix from the Foundation.

Chapter I


Article 1st

The Foundation is called Arpad Szenes- Vieira da Silva, has its headquarters in Lisbon, in the old Silk textiles Fabric, at Praça das Amoreiras, 58, and it will last indefinitely.

Article 2nd

1- The Foundation aims to promote the dissemination and study the art work of Vieira da Silva and Arpad Szenes.

 2- To carry put this end, the Foundation will promote:

     a) The creation of a museum dedicated to the exhibition of the art work of Vieira da Silva and Arpad Szenes, as well as other artists, contemporary to them.

     b) The creation of a documentation and research centre to support the work of these artists.

     c) Exhibitions, work-shops, seminars, or demonstrations of any kind, regarding subjects that may contribute to the betterment of contemporary art and for cultural and artistic education development.

     d) The edition and publishing, under any type, of works regarding history of art from the 20th century.

     e) The institution of awards or grants to artist and students, with the purpose to contribute for the development of art and its knowledge.

     f) The interchange with similar institutions, nationals and international, within their activities.

     g) Any other activities that may adjust to the Foundation’s purpose.



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