Telefónica Welcomes ‘Iris’ Sculpture by Jaume Plensa

Telefónica’s headquarters, Distrito Telefónica, undergoes a transformation today with the introduction of ‘Iris’, a striking artwork crafted by Catalan artist Jaume Plensa in honor of the company’s centenary.

Presented at the Telefónica District, ‘Iris’ was unveiled alongside Marta Machicot, Telefónica’s Global Director of People. This monumental sculpture stands six meters tall and weighs four tons, fashioned from stainless steel painted in radiant white. Jaume Plensa’s creation depicts the visage of a woman, described as possessing classical and Mediterranean beauty, meticulously formed from letters and symbols drawn from eight different alphabets. These elements symbolize the enduring ability to communicate amidst diverse backgrounds. Notably, the sculpture’s open-ended design signifies the vastness of the future, ever in the process of being shaped.

The title, ‘Iris’, pays homage to the Greek messenger goddess who disseminated news throughout the world, emphasizing the power of communication and language. Placed within the central lake of the Telefónica District, the artwork emerges from the water, symbolizing the source of life and the interconnectedness of humanity. According to Plensa, water epitomizes communication, bridging cultures and uniting people across vast distances.

José María Álvarez-Pallete, commenting on ‘Iris’, remarked, “It is not merely a work of art but a symbol of communication’s potency and human connection.” In an era of increasing globalization, where technology often dominates discourse, the sculpture serves as a poignant reminder of the significance of personal relationships and the intrinsic beauty they impart.

The President of the Community of Madrid, in congratulating Telefónica on its centenary, expressed appreciation for its contributions to Spain’s connectivity and quality of life. The arrival of ‘Iris’ in Madrid signifies not only a milestone for the company but also enriches the city’s cultural landscape.

Installed amidst the celebration of Telefónica’s centenary, ‘Iris’ joins the company’s extensive art collection, becoming its most monumental piece. Its placement in the Telefónica District ensures accessibility to both employees and visitors, inviting all to admire its splendor.

As part of the centennial festivities, a monographic exhibition featuring Jaume Plensa’s works will be hosted at the Espacio Fundación Telefónica this fall, showcasing the artist’s diverse portfolio spanning his illustrious career.

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