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HISTORY

XVII CENTURY - 1975: Museum Origins  Assembly of Saint Dominic (XVII-XIX century) 
During the XVII century a "village vow" imploring the aid of Saint Dominic, patron saint of the waters was held to have protected the town of Argentona from the great plague then afflicting Catalonia. In memory of this event, August 4th was set aside as an official feast day to honor the Saint. In time the Saint Dominic Feast became Argentona’s Major Festival and only the benediction of the Saint Dominic Spring waters remains as testimony to celebration of the original feast.

 

1951: The Water jug Festival
The feast was recovered in the year 1951, hence to be known as the "Cantir" Festival, thanks to the intervention of a special group of promoters, "Amics d’Argentona" headed by Jaume Clavell i Nogueras (awarded the Saint George Cross by the Catalonian Gereralitat). Since then on August 4th, Saint Dominic’s Day and Argentona’s Major Festival, the "Cantir" Festival is celebrated and the traditional water jug is the prized protagonist.

In 1975 in celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Water Jug Festival the village inaugurated the first monographic "cantir" museum. The museum was located in a beautiful Gothic style house donated by the sons of Joan Rectoret i Rigola.



Sale of the water jugs during the first edition of the fair (1951

 

 

 

Sale of the water jugs at the second fair (1952)


Procession proceeding to the Saint Dominic Spring fountain with image of the Saint (1968)

Antic_museu_1975.jpg (16960 bytes)

 


Original Museum (1975)

1975: CREATION OF THE MUSEUM
Thanks to a generous donation made by Jaume Clavell i Nogueras, the man who first promoted the project, the museum was first inaugurated in the year 1975. Since then, the number of specimens exhibited has grown considerably, in part due constant new purchases, and also thanks to the generous donations of its patrons. Presently the museum has more than 2,300 pieces, the most outstanding of which can be seen in its recently inaugurated galleries..

At first the museum was administrated by an entity entitled "Amics del Museu del Cantir". In more recent times this task has been assumed by the Patronat Municipal del Museu del Càntir, an autonomous foundation, created in the year 1985, and whose board membership includes museum patrons, local cultural figures as well as representatives from the different political groups. In 1986 Mr. Oriol Calvo Vergés starts working as the Director of the institution.  The undertakings of the foundation have been both ample and diverse although recently the primary objective has been to modernize the museum and to procure a dynamic approach to the cultural activities sponsored by the institution.

In the year 1997 the museum was forced to close its doors to the public due to the detection of serious structural deficiencies in the "casa gòtica", building that had originally housed its galleries. After considering different alternatives, it was decided to move the museum to the Cultural Center, a nearby building of recent construction which offered much more space and facilities than the initial headquarters. The interior of the new museum would be constructed employing a brand new design and would incorporate a variety of contemporary exhibition techniques.


Reception room with fireplace -original museum (1975)  

 

 

 

One of the Exhibition Rooms in the original Museum

YEAR 2000: INAUGURATION OF THE NEW BUILDING MUSEUM  
Finally, after three years of project proposals, budget revisions and construction work, the "Cantir" Museum was re-inaugurated in its present-day location. The new museum comprises more that 800 sq. meters of exhibition space, an excellent public service component, and embraces a variety of impressively modern galleries doted with attractive and didactically conceived displays and show cases. It has been designed with the idea of remaining dynamic, an aspect readily appreciable in the importance given to renewable and temporary exhibit halls.

It is our pleasure to announce that the new museum has been very well received by all the people that have had the pleasure of visiting its new facilities. Our present task is the challenge of transforming the museum into a cultural center that will remain dynamic and continue to attract new and varied public and participants. If you have not yet had the opportunity of visiting us, these pages should serve as a brief introduction.


Inauguration Day visit with official guests

 

 

 

Festival and theatre during the Inauguration Day

One of the exhibition halls in the new museum