Art and science play a key role in the development of society, a thought that has lasted throughout history. However, popular artists have always required the financial support of sponsors, who are also important nowadays.

not only has the power of capturing and transporting those who enjoy it to other places. It also contributes to the development of society, to the changing of minds, even to the starting of new historical eras.

For example, The Last Supper by Leonardo Da Vinci was ordered by the Duke of Milan, Ludovico Sforza. Likewise, Guernica by Picasso was economically supported by the Government of the Second Republic.

The figure of the sponsor has evolved throughout history and, step by step, states, academic institutions and companies have understood how important culture is for social prosperity. However, the huge economic crisis like that of 2008 froze public spending.

This way, step by step, new ways of financing were emerging such as the microsponsorship, a collaborative plan based on citizen participation, something similar to the famous “crowdfunding”. For example, in 2016 more than 3 million people donated a total of 240 million euros in Spain through these campaigns. An action that, thanks to the revision of the Law of Sponsorship, creates a tax benefit of up to 75% in Personal Income Tax.

For example, the Museo del Prado started in 2018 an aid campaign to finance the purchase of the piece Retrato de Niña con Palomaby Vouet, collecting 204,085 euros. Or the reform of the Pórtico de la Gloria in the Cathedral of Santiago, mostly financed by the Foundation Barrié.

Banco Santander, with culture

Big companies have adopted a proactive position in light of the economic crisis that has devastated the world. Through its Foundation, Banco Santander has been betting on cultural financing for 27 years, focusing on the humanistic and the scientific fields. These are some of its most important projects.


This focuses on really talented young artists who need a boost to show their works of arts. “Conexiones” was born thanks to the collaboration with the Museo ABC de Diseño e Ilustración (Design and Illustration ABC Museum).

Twice a year, since 2011, an individual exhibition of a mid-career artist who bases his/her work in drawing is organized. The only condition is to take a work from each of the collections (Banco Santander and Museo ABC) as a starting point. 17 exhibitions have already been held.

“Derivada”, dedicated to women

“Derivada” is a place reserved for women artists. The goal of the project is giving them greater visibility in this sector and promoting the collecting of Spanish contemporary art.

The winner of the First Edition was Regina de Miguel, from Malaga, who studied Fine Arts and exhibited works of arts inspired by science and literature, combining drawing, illustration and print.

The work of Miguel can be acquired in the web of Fundación Banco Santander.

María Moliner Prizes

Fundación Banco Santander will sponsor for the first time this year the María Moliner Prizes, within the framework of the XIX Campaign of Encouragement to Read María Moliner.

It is a recognition of the best library projects in localities of up to 50,000 citizens. In 2019, the winners were Arucas (Las Palmas), Herencia (Ciudad Real) and Villamalea (Albacete).

From 546 projects presented, 300 finalists won more than 1,700 euros and the Collection Obra Fundamental de la Fundación, an initiative that recovers the work of forgotten writers from the late XIX and early XX centuries.

Looking for solutions in the fight against cancer

Banco Santander has collaborated with the Foundation National Center of Oncological Investigations Carlos III since 2009 to support the investigation of cancer in Spain.

Banco Santander has invested in these projects between 6 and 8 million euros in the last 5 years

In this way, they have created a postdoctoral program for young investigators from the UK and United States. Those elected collaborate in the projects of the Center during two years, in which an exchange of knowledge is promoted.

Music, another factor of social prosperity

Banco Santander sponsors big music and artistic spaces in Spain such as the Teatro Real in Madrid, Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona and the Palau de la Música.

Also, for years Banco Santander has sponsored amateur musicians such as the Orfeón Donostiarra or the Fundación Albeniz, which focuses on the development of pedagogic programs for young people.

For example, the Chair of Piano of the Reina Sofia High School of Music, which has been training students for 18 years; or the Magister Musicae, an online lesson website with more than 3,000 hours of online lessons taught by international musicians from Spain, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru and Venezuela.

Through all these projects of its Foundation, Banco Santander has invested in the last 5 years between 6 and 8 million euros, thanks to which the work of hundreds of artists and investigation centers have been promoted.