Manuel Rocamora Vidal (1892-1976): col•leccionista i pintor

Student thesis: Doctoral thesis


This doctoral thesis focuses on the figure of Manuel Rocamora Vidal (Barcelona, 1892-1976), collector, painter, writer and cultural promoter. He is best known as a collector of historical clothing, including an important set of women’s, men’s, children’s and liturgical pieces, as well as their accessories, from the fourteenth to the twentieth century, being especially numerous those belonging to the eighteenth and the nineteenth century. For this reason, the other facets of the character have been forgotten, which is why the aim of the research is to let know all his occupations and analyse the contribution and overall importance of Manuel Rocamora. The study begins with his biography, along with information about his family and social circle, which helps us to situate him in the artistic and bourgeois context of the twentieth century in Barcelona. Next is detailed the most important aspect, which is the collectionism, where it is emphasised that, apart from its clothing collection, he reunited many other series: dolls and automata, painting, ceramics, figureheads, advertising items, business cards, exlibris, etc. A lot of his collections were lent at exhibitions or donated to different museums around Catalonia and Madrid, apart from keeping a selection inside his own home. The clothing collection is specially highlighted. This work studies the most important pieces, its overall value, the formation of the collection and its trajectory between various museums, motivated by partial donations to the Junta de Museus and Museus d’Art de Barcelona, to be finally donated to the City Council of Barcelona. This circumstance would imply the constitution of a collector’s museum located at the Marquis of Llió Palace in Montcada Street. Next there is an overview of his career as a painter, since Rocamora participated in numerous exhibitions, both individual and collective, in remarkable art galleries of Barcelona such as La Pinacoteca or Galeries Laietanes. Moreover, it is included a catalogue raisonné of the artist’s work. Also it is referenced his writing, with a list of published works; and his labour as a cultural promoter especially in Barcelona, where he founded and promoted various associations. Finally, it is addressed the constitution of the Fundación Cultural Privada Rocmamora, an institution that preserves the collector’s legacy and was created in his residence right after his death.
Date of Award2023
Original languageCatalan
SupervisorBuenaventura Bassegoda Hugas (Director)


  • Painting
  • Collectionism
  • Clothing

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