Who we are

TBA21 Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary is a leading international art and advocacy foundation. Established in 2002 by philanthropist and art patron Francesca Thyssen-Bornemisza, the Foundation stewards the TBA21 Collection and its outreach activities, which include exhibitions as well as educational and public programming. 

TBA21 is based in Madrid, working in association with the Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza, and has other important poles of action in Venice (Italy) and Portland (Jamaica). All activity at TBA21 is fundamentally driven by artists and the belief in art and culture as a carrier of social and environmental transformation, ultimately contributing to the creation of spaces for peace. 

TBA21–Academy is the foundation’s research arm, fostering a deeper relationship with the Ocean and other bodies of water by working as an incubator for collaborative inquiry, artistic production, and environmental advocacy. For more than a decade, the Academy has catalyzed new forms of knowledge emerging from the exchanges between art, science, policy, and conservation in long-term and collaborative engagement through fellowships, residency programs, and activities in a wide variety of formats.

Among its main projects are the art center Ocean Space (Venice), the independent study program Organismo | Art in Applied Critical Ecologies (Madrid, Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza), Alligator Head Foundation (Port Antonio, Jamaica), The Current Pacific/ Mediterranean/Caribbean, the online initiative Ocean-Archive.org with OCEAN / UNI, and Bauhaus of the Sea Sails.