Eugenio López Alonso purchased his first work of Mexican art in 1994. This was the symbolic beginning of the Fundación Jumex Arte Contemporáneo: from the outset, López was more interested in sharing his interest in art than in amassing a collection of objects.
Over the 1990s, Eugenio López spent his time studying contemporary art while also traveling and researching how to put together a collection that would encourage the development of the work of artists of his generation in Mexico.
Buying pieces by local and foreign artists while further broadening his scope and focus as a collector, López conceived the Fundación Jumex with a team of art professionals in order to promote contemporary art through programs that involved collecting, education, research and the funding of artists and museums.
The Fundación Jumex Arte Contemporáneo was formally established on March 3, 2001 (with the invaluable support of Mr. Eugenio López Rodea and Mrs. Isabel Alonso de López). López’s collection was exhibited publicly for the first time at the Galería Jumex: a 15 000 square-foot space designed by Gerardo García on the premises of the Grupo Jumex juice plant in Ecatepec. Though one sector of the art community was surprised by the gallery’s location in an industrial area on the outskirts of Mexico City, López and his team were convinced that this space for experimentation would further aid the development of contemporary art in Mexico.
With this in mind, the foundation created a library with an initial collection of 3000 titles concerning contemporary art theory and practice. Thus, the Fundación Jumex created a frame of reference for contemporary art; besides exhibitions, artists, artworks and a collector, the milieu needed new audiences, researchers and critics who had a well-informed stance on contemporary art.
Over its first ten years, the Fundación Jumex established itself as a private nonprofit organization that lent its support to curators and artists who are now well known in the national and international art scene; though the gallery in Ecatepec had acquired a faithful audience, Eugenio López felt that he had to take another step in order to share his enthusiasm for contemporary art with a broader public.
He thus came up with the idea of creating a museum so that local audiences could more readily familiarize themselves with the work of internationally renowned contemporary artists. He met with his team of collaborators and they entrusted the design of the building to British architect David Chipperfield—his first commission in Latin America.
The Museo Jumex opened its doors on November 19, 2013 with the goal of arousing the sensibility and critical sense of its diverse visitors.